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The Roommate bores her victims to death

Courtney Eckerle | Monday, February 7, 2011

We open on an idyllic college campus, with Sara, a wide-eyed, fresh-off-the-farm college freshman who looks like she’s in her 30s (“Friday Night Light’s” alum Minka Kelly, who is in fact, 30). She has all the hopes and dreams we remember from our own first day — the perfect setting for stuff to get really scary, really fast. Except it doesn’t.

It takes her less than a minute to meet her first “bad influence,” flakey Tracy. I can’t say I’m not with psycho roomie Rebecca (“Gossip Girl’s” Leighton Meester) here — that girl had to GO. Tracy’s suggestion on how to get into a club without an ID? “Uh, we’re hot.” Yeah, try getting into Finny’s or Fever with that. Tracy also leaves Sara at a strange bar in an unfamiliar city, and her only apology is, “Girl, he had a Porsche and a Jacuzzi”. Icky!

When Tracy meets Rebecca, she immediately tries to give her a nickname. Who does that? We’re supposed to buy Rebecca as a psycho because she doesn’t want some random girl she just met calling her Reba or Becky? Also she doesn’t wear shower shoes. Tracy is just gross all around. Sorry but I’m on psycho-killer roommate’s side.

Until, that is, (Spoiler alert) Rebecca kills a kitten. You read right, she kills an adorable kitten named Cuddles. Anyone knows Cuddles’ number is up the second she was brought into the room but we hope she’ll make some heroic escape. Sadly no, it’s a tragic end for dearest Cuddles — she gets laundered to death.

Leighton Meester’s empty-eyed villain is actually good, but misses the deeply disturbing mark by about a mile. She is more like that creepy girl at the end of the hallway who never comes out of her room, but you don’t really feel like she’s going to pull out a box cutter and start going after people. The believability in the whole “girl becomes homicidal over pretty, popular roommate” scenario is just shot. If pale skin and dark circles were any indicator for a sociopathic killer … watch out around finals.

Leighton Meester is a waify, stick of a girl, so unless she possesses some sort of superhuman strength, there’s no way she could do half of the stuff she did. One swat of the hand from any of her victims and she’d be done. Movie over, credits role. No such luck. Also, it’s a pretty big clue that even her parents are scared shitless of her. Their eyes are practically screaming “our daughter is a psycho killer! Help us!”

Minka Kelly is relatable, and of course super pretty, which I guess is supposed to make up for the fact that she is a 30-year-old playing an 18-year-old college freshman. It’s a movie so there is wiggle room on the age thing, but there is a line, and she crosses it. Too old — it’s distracting. They try to mask this by giving her Cam Gigandet as a boyfriend. He is actually two years younger than her but he looks super old in this movie.

The problem with this movie is that nothing happens that wasn’t in the trailers. Those really caught the highlights. If you’re looking for a movie where nothing really scary happens and you’re in absolutely no suspense, this is it.