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1408 (Two-Disc Collector's Edition) - horror/sci-fi DVD review
1408 (TWO-DISC COLLECTOR'S EDITION) rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America curledupdvd.com rating: 3 1/2 stars
Actors: John Cusack, Samuel L. Jackson, Mary McCormack, Tony Shalhoub
Director: Mikael Håfström   Studio: Weinstein Company
DVD release: 02 October 2007   Runtime: 112 minutes (2 discs)
Format: Closed-captioned, Collector's Edition, Color, Widescreen, NTSC
DVD features: Audio tracks (English, Dolby Digital 5.1; French, Dolby Digital 5.1), Subtitles (English SDH, Spanish), John Cusak on 1408, Inside Room 1408, Theatrical trailer

If a movie based on a Stephen King story having to do with a writer, ghosts, and a hotel sounds familiar, you'd be correct in your assumption. But it's 2007, and this isn't The Shining. Instead of the Overlook, you have the Dolphin Hotel. But the crux of this story has more to do with a single room than the entire hotel as a whole. In this film, John Cusack stars as Mike Enslin, a cynical writer who specializes in paranormal activity.

Early in the movie, Enslin picks up his mail from the post office and goes through it. It's mostly junk and bills, but there is a postcard that intrigues him. It reads: don't stay in room 1408. Why this leads Enslin into going to the Dolphin hotel is simple - he's never actually had a paranormal experience, and he's hoping this will be the first.

In one of the more effective scenes in the film, Enslin is warned by hotel manager Gerald Olin (Samuel L. Jackson) to not stay in room 1408. Truth be told, Olin does everything in his power to keep him from staying in that room, but Enslin gets his way and in the room he confronts true terror.

It's best to go into this without preconceptions - the less you know, the more you will enjoy the film. There have been better King adaptations, and there have been worse. Depending on your tastes and age 1408 is somewhere in the middle. It works well enough as escapist entertainment, sufficing you don't think too hard about plot and consistencies. And, sure enough, Samuel L. Jackson has his usual great Samuel L. Jackson line of dialogue in the movie, but it's not nearly enough to elevate 1408 past the level of okay. In a horror world where over-the-top torture flicks are (were) the current trend, 1408 at the very least offers an alternative to the gore reliant Saw and Hostel.
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reviewed by Bobby Blades
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