THE INNKEEPERS (2011) Review

Directed by: Ti West
Starring: Sara Paxton, Pat Healey, Kelly McGillis

This movie confused the hell out of me. Since watching it I've read a whole bunch of positive reviews from all different people because honestly I don't see what the fucking point of this movie was and how anybody actually enjoyed it. And even after reading all of these reviews I still don't get it, they're all just as vague as the actual movie itself.

THE INNKEEPERS follows two employees at the supposedly haunted Yankee Pedlar Inn. The inn is just about to close down and these two friends Claire (Paxton) and Luke (Healey) are working the final weekend. With almost no residents staying at the inn, Claire and Luke decide to hunt for the ghost of a woman named Madeline O'Malley who supposedly died way back when.
With Luke feeding her descriptions of his own paranormal encounters, Claire is more than excited to find this ghost. After not much happens, there is finally some unexplained activity (voices and piano keys are heard) and eventually one of their few guests (who just happens to be a psychic) warns them not to go into the basement.
So of course Claire decides to go into the basement.

Now you would expect by this point in the film that some scary shit is going to go down. Up until this point THE INNKEEPERS has been slow and drawn out with it's character development, but it genuinely feels like it's building up to something big. But you'd be wrong.
Almost nothing happens in this movie and the things that do happen seemingly happen for no reason at all. No explanation is given for anything. Normally I don't have a problem with movies that leave some unanswered questions at the end, but this is taking it way too far. The entire movie is slow and vague and not scary at all. It's like they spent too much time concentrating on the characters joking and chatting and walking around that they just didn't leave enough time to resolve the whole ghost plot.
And I know that stupid characters seem to be an essential ingredient in most horror/thriller films but nobody is as stupid as Claire. She gets told not to go into the basement so she does and bad things happen. Later she is told by the same person to leave the building, so what does she do? Back down to the basement of course.

What the movie lacked in storyline it (almost) made up for in other areas. The entire film looked good, the inn was a great location, the acting was above average and the atmosphere created was actually not bad at all. Unfortunately though this wasn't enough to counter the lack of tension and numerous other problems.
The most disappointing thing for me is the fact that this could have made for a really good, slow burning, atmospheric horror flick. Instead it turned out to be an hour-and-a-half of nothing happening, and will probably appeal to fans of the Paranormal Activity franchise.


  1. I totally understand what you when you saw you felt confused. I think people are more a fan of the directed Ti West. Because it wasn't a horrible movie but there was so many things that were unexplained and I felt lost.

  2. I just got bored waiting for something to actually happen. The only 'exciting' parts were all crammed in right at the end.