Panic Room

TV2, Wednesday, November 1, 8.30pm

David Fincher (Fight Club) directs esteemed Hollywood actress Jodie Foster in the suspenseful Panic Room: 7/10.

Recently divorced Meg Altman (Jodie Foster) is on the house-hunting path along with her daughter, Sarah (Kristen Stewart). Using the money from her divorce settlement, Meg purchases an old New York brownstone; a home formerly owned by a wealthy recluse. Unlike other apartments, the brownstone features a panic room; an enclosed area where residents can hide in case of an emergency. The panic room comes equipped with a buried phone line, ventilation system, a series of surveillance videos monitoring the house and an impenetrable door made of thick steel.

Meg and Sarah dismiss the brownstone’s unusual feature, never imagining they may need to use the panic room. But when three men stage a seamless late night break-in, Meg and Sarah take refuge in the sanctuary of the panic room, not realising that the room itself is their target… and the intruders will stop at nothing to get inside.

The role of Meg Altman was initially offered to Hollywood superstar Nicole Kidman. When Nicole was injured during the making of ‘Moulin Rouge’, Jodie Foster stepped in as the lead actress in Panic Room.

“This eccentric millionaire had built this panic room so that if anybody came to steal his money, he could protect himself,” says Jodie. “This room is pretty special. It has eight video monitors with cameras all over the house. It has stashes of things that you might need – a fire blanket, a fire starter. It has water, so that if you needed to stay there for a month, you could.”

The panic room featured within the movie has become a popular feature in wealthy American households, particularly those owned by celebrities. In Southern California, a pervading sense of unease among studio and other business moguls has driven the demand for safe rooms to unprecedented levels. Some consumers build panic rooms as simple hideouts in case of attack, while others use the rooms to protect their riches from modern-day marauders.

But in David Fincher’s Panic Room, it may be the only thing that keeps Meg Altman and her daughter alive.

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About the author

Co-founder of Throng. Favourite TV shows recently: Homeland and The Newsroom.
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