Lifetime TV "movie-of-the-week" + several hardcore kill scen
Hugo D. Hackenbush | Main Street, USA | 05/13/2009
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Don't be fooled by Guillermo Del Toro's name as a producer on this film... Kim Basinger, Lukas Haas and Craig Sheffer all collect an undeserved paycheck in the straight-to-DVD exploitation revenge flick "While She Was Out".
Basinger plays an upper-middle class trophy wife who, along with her beloved two children, is stuck in an abusive marriage to a cretinous loser of an alcoholic husband (played by a forgettable Craig Sheffer). After yet another round of domestic violence with her drunk hubby, Basinger takes off from her gated community digs and decides to clear her head by getting a little Christmas shopping done at the local mall. While there, she happens upon an ethnically-diverse group of particularly stupid teen mall thugs (led by a completely unconvincing Lukas Haas), who thereafter proceed to chase and terrorize Basinger until she is finally driven to fight back.
Sub-standard entry in the revenge film genre isn't even good for a few laughs, as the film alternates between being tedious (the film is essentially one long, badly-paced chase sequence), ludicrous (somehow when stranded in a huge forest at night with her assailants, Basinger just can't seem to escape, no matter how fast she runs, no matter how much lead time she has over them; meanwhile, the bad guys, completely unfamiliar with their surroundings and armed only with a flash light, always seem to know the general direction she is going, and never get lost while walking slowly after her) and cartoonishly, gratuitously violent (watch long, close-up money shots of assorted car tools explicitly pummeling and piercing flesh!).
Basinger (looking as beautiful as ever) tries her best, as she yelps and quivers convincingly enough, but it's all for naught, as the film is dismal on pretty much every level.
Even those who wholeheartedly enjoy revenge and torture porn flicks will find their patience tested with this one. What initially starts out as intriguing quickly steers into borderline camp (check out the scene where Basinger's character runs into an old friend at the mall) before eventually becoming a flat-out bore, thanks to perfunctory direction, cliched plotting, embarrassing dialogue and dull, cardboard characters. Those hearty viewers that manage to stay awake for the silly "surprise" ending of "While She Was Out" will be rewarded with a newfound respect for Charles Bronson's "Death Wish" series.
Need I say it? Skip this film... even as a rental."
Good acting, but not much of a storyline
Totally Honest Reviewer | USA | 01/09/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Kim Basinger played the down-trodden housewife and victim well. I thought Haas also did a fairly good job of playing the villain. The plot is a simple one and early on, one keeps hoping there is something more. However, it held my interest due to the good acting by Basinger. The ending was abrubt and unexpected, and as a whole, I did enjoy the movie. The blue-ray quality was pretty good, but don't expect any special features, as there aren't any."