‘The Loft’ shows our scary nature

Posted April 6, 2015


“The Loft” is a self-described film about a space, more specifically a loft, where the restrictions that exist in the real world temporarily disappear. An array of issues that most people, couples and families deal with were all touched upon in this movie to show the human and, sometimes, scary nature that everyone has in them.

The director, Erik Van Looy, first directed the original version of this film, titled “Loft” in 2008 in Belgium. The original production received better reviews, even though both films had the same director and plot, and there was another successful remake of the movie done in 2010 released in the Netherlands. The film was recreated in the U.S. with the use of some well-known actors, however, the film fell a bit short of viewer’s expectations.

Van Looy also directed a film released in 2003 titled “The Memory of a Killer” which relates to the common theme among some of his films that focus on individuals trying to solve a murder crime. He has a knack for drawing suspense from these crimes and leading you on a journey with the main characters to discover the truth behind a gruesome killing.

The timeline of this film jumps in-between past and present in order to explain where things began to build up and gives you some false insights in order to keep you guessing who is responsible for the dead woman lying in the loft and so you can also see that some of the characters have been ticking time bombs, that some of them could go off at any minute.

Each of the main characters served a specific purpose, but I wish there had been maybe one fewer, so that more attention could have been given to building a solid story for each of them. Thankfully, each of the characters are well-known actors that are in many other works, or they would have been very hard to distinguish from each other.

Karl Urban, James Marsden, Wentworth Miller, and Eric Stonestreet play four of the five main characters, all relatively well known in the film industry. James Marsden has appeared in several X-Men films, and also played a role in The Notebook, which was a highly rated movie.

None of the actors, however, have played such sinister roles as the ones they played in this movie. I believe that seeing them in films like “The Notebook” and the television series “Modern Family,” in which Stonestreet plays a gay uncle, leave me unconvinced of them in their roles as cheating, murdering husbands.

Also, especially as a female, it is hard to relate or like any of the main characters, instead feeling more attached to the woman on the bed, and keeping me from becoming too invested in any of the characters. None of the main characters are likeable enough to take the time to become curious about them, instead just wanting the film to hurry up and tell us who did it.

The opening scene with the main character being questioned by the police was not one I usually tend to like, as it spoils the fact that we know the crime does not go unnoticed. It does build a sense of anticipations to see where things go from fun to when Vincent is speaking to the police trying to tell them they have it all wrong.

The plot twist in the end that revealed Luke had been in love with Isabel felt forced to me. They had met merely twice before and he had always been the most in control. It’s clear it was meant to be the ultimate shock to the audience, but it needed to have some more substance behind it if the writers were going to base his murderous activity on his undying love for her and a comment she made in passing, that maybe it would work between them “… in another life.”

Overall, the puzzle that the writers created to confuse and engage the viewer was thoroughly entertaining, especially as a female, getting to see a different side of men that emerges when the wives turn their backs, but the puzzle, when all put together comes off as a bit silly.

  • “The Loft”
  • Released Jan. 30, 2015 by Open Road
  • Features Wentworth Miller, James Marsden, Karl Urban
  • 1 hour, 48 minutes
  • Directed by Erik Van Looy
  • 6.7 out of 10