Critical Condition: Room 104

Room 104 (SoHo, 9.30 Saturday)

➢ “HBO’s Room 104 by Mark and Jay Duplass (Togetherness, Animals) is a wildly creative drama set in a respectable roadside hotel room … A different scenario unfolds each week over 12 half-hour episodes. Though the show never leaves the one room, the characters, tone and story line vary so much from episode to episode that the only constants are the cheap furniture, and the element of surprise … This eclectic series is the answer for those burned out on all the binge-watching. Check in or out when you please. No commitment required.” — Los Angeles Times.

➢ “This series can be many things. Often the genre is horror. In the first episode, Ralphie, a babysitter (Melonie Diaz) shows up to watch a creepy boy (Ethan Kent) who tells horrific stories about his imaginary — or maybe unimaginary? — friend. In The Knockadoo, a troubled woman (Sameerah Luqmaan-Harris) meets with a cult disciple (Orlando Jones) to perform a ritual that unearths disturbing childhood memories. Both episodes feel a bit unfinished, but the unsettling images linger, and each takes advantage of the claustrophobic effect of shrinking a haunted house to one room.” — New York Times.

➢ “HBO’s new half-hour series feels almost experimental and new, even though its premise is the most basic and traditional of film school exercises: Tell a single story within the confines of a single motel room. It’s a lesson in creative use of space (it’s one room, plus a bathroom, maybe with a closet or two), elapsed time (guests rarely stay in a room more than a couple of nights) and set decoration (finite furniture, but ample redressing possibilities).” — The Hollywood Reporter.

➢ “Room 104 is to be lauded for its adventurousness, but more rigorous attention to quality control could have made it more consistently enthralling. Installments starring James Van Der Beek, Amy Landecker, Ellen Geer, and Keir Gilchrist weren’t offered for review, but if they strike the admirable balance between discipline and atmosphere that Ralphie did, they could be worth checking out.” — Variety.

➢ “Room 104 is equally consistent in rewarding viewers’ inquisitiveness and patience, while being slightly less ambitious in scope (as if anything could be more ambitious). Of the six episodes given to critics (half the first season), what’s on display is inventive and unique, featuring excellent performances, strong direction, and writing that steers stories toward the unexpected more often than not.” — IndieWire.

Twitter Digg Delicious Stumbleupon Technorati Facebook Email

No comments yet... Be the first to leave a reply!

Leave a Reply