New from A Reel of One’s Own by Andrea Thompson: Twisted Dreams Film Festival 2020: Exit

By Andrea Thompson

Some movies are so terrible you don’t even want to waste words on them, let alone a review. But I watched this damn film “Exit,” and anyone who comes across it should avoid my mistake. Everything about this movie is an insult, but its biggest mistake is its refusal to lean into its own sleaziness, preferring to moralize instead.

Things kick off when a British couple arrive in London to celebrate their three-year anniversary after finding a suspiciously good deal on an apartment in the city. The catch comes when they discover there’s supposedly been a double booking, and must share the place with a far wealthier, quite stereotypical French couple for the night. After some conversation, bolstered by the added ingredients of alcohol and drugs, much smut ensues.

And it very much is smut, with effects that are straight out of its 90s setting, and will be instantly recognizable to anyone who happened to pick up a straight-to-DVD video out of the bargain bin at their local video store. If Michael Fausti put any effort whatsoever into the scenes that didn’t involve sex, there might be something at least laughably enjoyable, but there’s nothing slightly redeemable about a film that insists on shaming us for what it’s clearly relishing.

Things get even worse when it tries to add some social commentary, with Trump’s book “The Art of the Deal” making a cameo. But such thin characters and a ludicrous plot, which devolves from nonsensical to outright sadistic by the end, only adds insult to injury, especially when it tries to add a Final Girl-esque empowerment narrative. That’s particularly baffling, since “Exit” has spent the entire time objectifying its female characters up until that point, from the paintings on the walls to its emphasis on their sexuality, often in the most demeaning fashion possible. I wish I had a physical copy of this movie to throw in some sort of trash bin, but giving it the lowest rating possible will just have to do.

Grade: F

Exit is playing through Oct. 4 at the Twisted Dreams Film Festival. More info can be found at www.twisteddreamsff.com.

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