KNOCK KNOCK **** USA 2015 Dir: Eli Roth. 99 mins

Happily married family man / architect Keanu Reeves has the house to himself while working to a tight deadline when he’s visited by a pair of outrageously hot, stranded “flight attendants” (Lorenza Izzo, Ana de Armas), lost and desperate for help. After much frank sex talk and flirtation, he gives in to pure lust for a threesome that he instantly regrets – and very quickly pays the price for. Much head-fucking, physical torment and childish mischief ensues. Eli Roth’s best movie since HOSTEL PART II, this genuinely tense, funny thriller is unencumbered by the gore and mood-killing juvenile humour that characterises most of his career.
It’s a marvellously mean-spirited extension of all those early 90’s home invasion / domestic slasher films in which nice middle class families have their lives wrecked by manipulative, unhinged outsiders. Reeves is perfectly cast and charming as a credibly weak Everyman whose inability to resist a pair of provocative beauties results in torture, sexual assault …and even a shitty bowl-based haircut. His keynote defensive speech (“What was I supposed to do? You fucking sucked my cock! Both of you!”) is a highlight, and, instead of copping out with obvious mayhem, the movie pays off with a splendidly cynical denouement aimed at people who felt Michael Douglas got off way too lightly in FATAL ATTRACTION. It’s witty and stylish, and Izzo & Armas are fabulously sexy and fucked-up as the twisted femmes fatales.

Review by Steven West

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