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Right At Your Door
UKScreen Rating:

Right At Your Door – Review

WHAT’S IT ABOUT?

Lexi (McCormack) and her husband Brad (Cochrane) have just moved into a new house in the LA suburbs. They haven’t even got the TV connected yet, but Brad’s a musician, so he’s happy with the radio.
One morning, like any other, Lexi heads off to work in Downtown LA, leaving Brad at home alone.
Unlike any other morning, Brad’s radio show is interrupted by a news bulletin – there’s been a dirty bomb attack on Downtown LA.
He calls Lexi, but there’s no reply. The radio warns people to shut themselves inside their homes, but Brad isn’t having any of it. He jumps into his car and heads towards the plumes of smoke, but it’s no use. The roads have been blocked off and the police send him home.
Dejected, he follows the instructions from the authorities and tapes up the windows and doors of his home, on the understanding that anyone outside would by now be infected and have no chance of survival.
As the last bit of tape is sealing up the last window, Lexi arrives back home, covered in dust, screaming to be let inside.
As things stand, she’s facing certain death, but inside, he’ll survive.
If he opens the door, they’ll both be infected and they’ll both die – not the kind of quandary a newly-wed couple need, just after they’ve moved into a new home.

WHAT’S IT LIKE?

The budget is as low as the concept is high.
After a summer of big budget blockbusters, this timely tale of a terrorist attack is peculiarly small-scale: essentially, it’s one house and two actors – one inside and one outside.
It’s as brave as it is welcome to see such a big issue through the eyes of a couple, removed from the action – we don’t see any explosions or any terrorists – we don’t even hear about political reactions to the attackers – it’s all about a husband struggling with one heart-wrenching, life-changing decision.
Given how small the project was, it’s a pretty effective piece of drama, using its meagre resources to its advantage – Blair-Witch-Style – to create the necessary claustrophobia and panic, centring on a very real fear – no ghosts or ghoulies or Hollywood bad guys – had the London Underground bombers added some bio-hazards to the mix, millions of Londoners could have found themselves in exactly the same predicament.
We – like Brad – get all our information about what’s going on outside from the radio – it might seem like a corny device, but it adds to the sense of claustrophobia and uncertainty.
But the film has its failings – the characters aren’t as likeable or interesting as they need to be to sustain what’s essentially a two-handed play of this length – and it unnecessarily opts for an unexpected twist of a denouement, which isn’t entirely successful or indeed coherent.

Opens nationwide 8th September 2006

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