Dennis Haysbert & Dale Dickey in Hulu Thriller

Agatha Christie meets The Hateful Eight in Damien Power’s thriller about five people trapped in an ice shelter, with one or more of them guilty of kidnapping a little girl. Adapted from Taylor Adams’ 2017 novel, No way out was originally scheduled for a theatrical release but is now showing domestically on Hulu. There, the film’s absurd plots and lack of star power are less likely to keep viewers hungry for new content.

Relative newcomer Havana Rose Liu (Mayday) plays the centerpiece of Darby, a twenty-year-old recovering addict who discovers during rehab that her mother has a brain aneurysm and is in the hospital. Leaving the facility temporarily, she managed to drive to Salt Lake City to see her mother before it was too late, only to stay in a visitor center during a raging blizzard.

No way out

Key point

You will feel trapped while watching this claustrophobic thriller.

Release date: Friday, February 25 (Hulu)

Cast: Havana Rose Liu, Danny Ramirez, David Rysdahl, Mila Harris, Dennis Haysbert, Dale Dickey

Manager: Damien Palace

Writer: Andrew Barrer, Gabriel Ferrari

R-rated, 1 hour 30 minutes

Other snow dwellers are former Marines Ed (Dennis Haysbert) and his wife Sandi (Dale Dickey), who are stranded en route to their weekend getaway in Reno, and two young men: Ash friendly, engaging (Danny Ramirez, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier) and headset-wearing Lars (David Rysdahl), who seems to be lost in a world of his own.

Lack of cell phone service, nothing to do but make small talk and play card game Bullshit. That is, until Darby, resting outside, discovers a little girl (Mila Harris) tied and gagged in the back of a truck in the parking lot. A series of episodes ensues as Darby tries to figure out which of the people inside is the kidnapper and how to free the child.

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It’s a reasonable premise for a claustrophobic thriller but it doesn’t go very well, due to laborious plot mechanics, lame dialogue, and over-the-top characters. For example, Lars practically screams “mental” with a sullen, withdrawn demeanor, or as Ed describes him, “strange white boys with a chip on his shoulder.” (Rysdahl appears to be auditioning for the role of Igor in a production of Young Frankenstein.)

It would be too many details to reveal how the plot unfolded, except to say that the little girl ended up in the bunker eventually and that a complicated situation ensued, with one of the The character actually utters hoary lines, “Give us girls and no one gets hurt. “It’s clear that with all abducted children, at least in the bad movies, the victim also has a life-threatening illness and is in dire need of her medication.

Perhaps the most original element of the film turns out to be that Darby uses his experiences as a recovering addict to resist, at one point, inhaling cocaine to give himself superhuman energy to escape from a particularly precarious situation. Originally, yes, but not exactly a compelling argument for sanity.

In the end, the movie goes from being a lunatic to being a bloody carnival full of violence, with a high body count (at least in percentage terms) and especially the blatant use of nail guns. bad.

Director Power arranges thrilling plot mechanics with reasonable skill, and the film’s succinct 90-minute run ensures that speed never gets bogged down. Haysbert makes good use of his natural charisma and quiet authority that have made him such an effective insurance pitcher. Dickey, however, looks criminally wasteful, especially after her stellar performance in the recent Sundance premiere. A love song. Ramirez delivers a charismatic turn as Darby’s superficial ally, and Liu proves himself more capable as the tough but flawed female lead.

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