Rest Stop is Closed
Rest Stop (2006): 4 out of 10: Tedium is not a pleasant experience. Rest Stop has plenty of tedium. To paraphrase Ed Harris in Glengarry Glenn Ross “Hey lets take all the latest overexposed trends in horror movies and put them in one film. Yeah, no one has thought of that before”
The film starts with the couple that’s hard to root for. He (Joey Mendicino) is a jerk, she (Jaimie Alexander) is a spoiled Daddy’s girl. They are driving from Texas to California and get lost. (It’s one road called I-10 numbskulls) They stop to make love, and I was having Seventies horror film flashbacks as horrid soft-folk rock was playing in the background as soft filtered sunlight danced on their naked bodies.
They eventually stop at a backwoods rest stop and the movie moves distinctly into science fiction territory. Ever since Seven and more recently Saw, moviemakers have been trying to one up each other in creating the most disgusting bathroom imaginable. The ladies’ restroom is one of those over the top places. My wife expressed amazement that any woman would enter such a room, let alone use the facilities. I’m a guy and I wouldn’t use them. A hooker would think twice about using the facilities. Jaimie Alexander’s character loses all credibility when she plops herself down.
Actually, Alexander’s character loses credibility over and over again in the film. As written, she is one of the dumbest heroines ever seen in a movie. (My personal favorite sticking her fingers through the door at the killer, which he naturally bites off.) The rest of the film reads like a modern horror cliché checklist, redneck serial killer in Duel style truck (check), Crazy religious family with demented dwarf child (check), poorly lit torture room with stupid zooming camera effects (check), killer tricks heroine into killing an innocent (check), supernatural apparitions (um check), Joey Lawrence (uh yeah actually), endless conversations that slow movie to a crawl (you betcha) and, my personal favorite, an ending that disregards everything that came before in search of so-called twist (bingo).
Somewhat surprising that a movie with this much violence, nudity and horror clichés can be so boring to watch.