This satisfying, meat-and-potatoes horror tale takes a simple premise, adds a couple of flourishes, makes the most of it for 85 minutes, then gets out before it can overstay its welcome. In miserable Detroit, a trio of young burglars—good-hearted Alex (Dylan Minnette), his platonic female friend Rocky (Jane Levy), and her scummy boyfriend Money (Daniel Zovatto)—set out to rob a blind Army veteran (Stephen Lang) who’s rumored to have bundles of cash hidden in his dilapidated but well-secured home. Things go awry in a chilling, Wait Until Dark sort of way, but our rooting interest remains with the thieves (there's another layer to the story that I won't mention) as they learn that a fortress can easily become a prison. Director Fede Alvarez (of the 2013 Evil Dead remake) delivers several hold-your-breath moments in a tight, expertly-paced thriller, making it easy to overlook narrative problems like the character who ought to be dead several times yet persists in living. Just when you think you know where it’s going, there’s another icky turn to make you smile and wince.
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