Genre: Horror/Thriller
Director: Mitesh Patel
Cast: Meredith Vancuyk, Joey Heyworth, Sean Dillingham, George Nelson
Runtime: 1 hr 41 mins
Rating: PG13 (Horror)
Released By: mm2 Entertainment
Official Website: 

Opening Day: 22 February 2024

Synopsis: A young woman rents a house in America's largest ghost town, Jerome, Arizona for a business trip, but soon discovers that the house is cursed and traps any woman who enters it. The house transforms into a maze, making it impossible for the woman to escape. Will she be able to break the curse and escape the maze before it's too late? or will she become the next victim of the cursed house?

Movie Review:

There’s no other way to say it – ‘Woman in the Maze’ is absolutely awful.

Directed and cowritten by Mitesh Kumar Patel, the movie follows real estate agent Gabbi Reynolds (Meredith VanCuyk) who is sent to the town of Jerome, Arizona to check out a list of properties that local realtor Owen Bannister (Joey Heyworth) is offering. Gabbi books herself a stay at the Hannah House, which turns out to be the titular maze that she finds herself inadvertently trapped in.

What secrets does the House hold? Who is behind the opening and closing of hidden doors within the House, or for that matter, the random visions Gabbi has been having while she sleeps? Who are the spirits trying to warn Gabbi to leave the house? As intriguing as that might sound, especially seeing as how it is based on the real-life legends of Jerome, you’d probably lose interest after the first half hour – and let’s just say after sticking around for the rest of the movie, you’ll be wishing you did something else with the last hour of your life.

Clearly deluded that he could mount a character-driven horror, Patel takes half the movie to unleash the House’s true horrors on Gabbi. That wait though is an utter drag, as we wait with growing impatience watching a self-absorbed Gabbi reject a well-intentioned Owen who clearly had feelings for her from the get-go but makes a somewhat inexplicable decision to turn up unannounced at the House late one night to check on her – just in case you’re wondering though, as much as you hope for it to be so, the movie isn’t smart enough to involve Owen in the hauntings.

When it does get to unveiling the titular maze, the anti-climax is disappointing to the point of being infuriating. Is the maze really just Gabbi running repeatedly into a room she cannot escape from? Or a basement she somehow falls into to find a corpse and a flashback that is conveniently inserted to tell of the curse that lies upon the House? Or really just a random collection of scenes that have no coherence, including the sudden and laughable appearance of Gabbi’s replicant who tries to get out into the real world to replace the real Gabbi?

If the movie is so devoid of logic, there is hardly any reason it deserves respect for being spoiler-free. That the movie was made on a shoestring budget isn’t excuse for how lazy and unimaginative it is, throwing everything but the kitchen sink from the genre playbook into a disjointed mish-mash that insults the intelligence of its viewers. It isn’t just silly all right; it is downright offensive how the movie thinks it can get away with such hogwash. And much as we are sympathetic to VanCuyk for trying to hold the movie together, it is also difficult not to blame her for taking us for a ride.

We’re not sure why anyone who has seen it would have cared to give it a release, let alone a cinematic one, but here, ‘Woman in the Maze’ is getting a limited run that hopefully is as short-lived as possible. You’d do well to avoid getting into this maze at all, because far from being captivated, you’ll find yourself frustrated for no good reason. So leave the woman in the maze and save yourself – you’ll be doing yourself and everyone else involved in the making of this embarrassment a favour.

Movie Rating:

(Lazy, unimaginative and often incoherent, the horror here is not the titular maze, but how much of a mess this movie is)

Review by Gabriel Chong


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