IN TOO DEEP

Get­ting healthy has never been more dan­ger­ous than in Gore Verbin­ski’s mys­te­ri­ous hor­ror

Empire (UK) - - PRE.VIEW - WORDS PHIL DE SEMLYEN

“DANE PUT UP with a lot on this film,” con­fesses di­rec­tor Gore Verbin­ski of his A Cure For

Well­ness star. Sure enough, early footage of the psy­cho­log­i­cal hor­ror shows its pro­tag­o­nist, Dane Dehaan’s cocky Wall Street gun, sub­merged, doused and gen­er­ally over-hy­drated as he en­dures the “false es­cape” of a mys­te­ri­ous Alpine sana­to­rium. There, he’ll find the spa’s woozy am­bi­ence much more hyp­notic than he bar­gained for, even be­fore its dark­est se­crets emerge.

A con­tem­po­rary Gothic that prom­ises blind cor­ners, curve­balls and old-fash­ioned spooks, it sees the Pi­rates Of The Caribbean vet­eran swap sum­mer tent­poles for more win­try chills. It’s a re­turn to the genre roots that saw him re­make The

Ring, and it’ll drill deep into the zeit­geist. “I’m hop­ing to tap into this sick­ness we all feel,” he ex­plains. “So­ci­ety is go­ing through an ex­is­ten­tial cri­sis and in many ways we’re ripe for di­ag­no­sis, but what if the cure was worse than the dis­ease?”

Judg­ing by his movie’s first trailer, an at­ten­tion-snatch­ing en­trée into its por­trait hand­some but deeply creepy world, it could ful­fil Verbin­ski’s high hopes for it. “I’d love to do for a trip to the spa what Jaws did to a day at the beach,” he says, half se­ri­ous. Thought it was safe to go back in the wa­ters? Think again.

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