‘The Immaculate Room’ Review: A Blank Slate

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When the sweethearts Kate (Kate Bosworth) and Mikey (Emile Hisrch) first enter the Immaculate Room, they see possibility in all its emptiness. All they have to do is spend 50 days in this space — so titled by the mysterious scientist spearheading the challenge — and they’ll win $5 million.

Rational viewers will automatically see the Immaculate Room’s nightmarish potential. Kate and Mikey haven’t signed up for a vacation, they’ve volunteered themselves as lab rats. “The Immaculate Room,” written and directed by Mukunda Michael Dewil, is similarly unwilling to embrace its darkest depths. As a result, it delivers a moralistic ending that is as simple and bland as the titular room.

Kate and Mikey are giving their relationship another shot, and have apparently decided that imprisoning themselves together will reignite the spark. Unfortunately, these opposites don’t attract. Kate is a rule-following pragmatist from humble beginnings. Mikey is a well-heeled vegan artist whose plans for the prize money include smoking weed with Elon Musk.

The room changes lighting to simulate morning, midday and night; delivers three daily “meals” of a flavorless liquid labeled FOOD; and holds Kate and Mikey to a number of arbitrary rules. Kate would rather just play along, but Mikey becomes suspicious early on, first noting that he thinks the clock counting down their time is being manipulated.

That seems worth exploring — after all, time is paramount in this challenge. But that plot thread never goes anywhere, much like key aspects of Kate and Mikey’s back stories. The film focuses more on one character’s moral defects than the sketchy project overall, leading to a conclusion that feels unsatisfying at best and pompous at worst.

The Immaculate Room
Rated R for bare breasts and ecstasy. Running time: 1 hour 32 minutes. In theaters and available to rent or buy on Apple TV, Google Play and other streaming platforms and pay TV operators.

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