Home invasion thrillers are a specific type of thriller we see at least once a year. Some good, some bad. The Owners stars a former Doctor Who and a Game of Thrones star, and although its synopsis sounds a lot like Don’t Breathe this adaption from the graphic novel ‘Une Nuit de Pleine Lune’ from creators Hermann and Yves H, never comes even close to the quality of the former.

It’s the 90s and a bunch of low life stoners are planning to burglarize a retired couple’s isolated house. The easily distracted thieves think it will be easy to crack the safe, but are unaware of how relaxed this couple actually is. Soon, they’ll have to figure out how to outsmart the former doctor and nurse, and get out of the house alive. The Owners was adapted for the screen and directed by Julius Berg (La Forêt) and even though the ideas and some of the acting is pretty decent, the end product is anything but that.

The pacing is a massive problem, as it seems Berg wants to invest (or save money) by focusing on a scene for far too long with dialogue that is sleep inducing. We barely know who these characters are and most of the surprises are just not noteworthy. In one particularly intense sequence, where our gang of wannabe thieves can’t agree on who’s going to torture the senile lady of the house, one meets a disturbingly graphic death.

The unorganized final act is so incredibly off putting where the ratio changes to a 4:3 boxed format for no reason whatsoever (seriously, what was the point of that?!) and a big reveal that was hinted at before underwhelms beyond comparison. The Owners is riddled with paper-thin characters and lacks motivations, making you dislike everyone and everything from start to finish. Except for that scene with the hammer. Thanks for that.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Signature Entertainment presents The Owners on Digital Platforms 22nd February and DVD 1st March

Review – ‘The Owners’

Reviewed online (screener provided by publicist), February 17, 2021. Rating: Cert 18. Running time: 92 min.

PRODUCTION: (UK) A Signature Entertainment release of a Blue Light, Logical Pictures, Wild Bunch, XYZ Films production. Producers: Alain de la Mata, Christopher Granier-Deferre. Executive producers: Nate Bolotin, Maxime Cottray, Marc Gabizon, Stéphane Mazain.

CREW: Director: Julius Berg. Screenplay: Mathieu Gompel, Julius Berg, Geoff Cox. Cinematography: David Ungaro. Editing: Marc Boucrot.

CAST: Maisie Williams, Sylvester McCoy, Rita Tushingham, Jake Curran, Ian Kenny, Stacha Hicks, Andrew Ellis.

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