Right at Your Door - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Right at Your Door Reviews

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Super Reviewer
June 14, 2012
three stars
Super Reviewer
½ February 5, 2009
"Terror just hit home."

After Lexi leaves home to visit Central LA, there's a terrorist attack involving chemical bombs. After the attack, her musician husband, Brad, fails to find her and reluctantly seals himself inside his house. He will have to deal with this decision in the days to come.

Chris Gorak's directorial debut taps into the post-9/11 paranoia and fear of global terrorism and raises some very tough and emotionally devastating questions by creating nihilistic situations that create the premises for this brilliant, tense film about what started off as a normal day soon turned into an absolute nightmare for the commuters and residents of Los Angeles.

Aspiring musician Brad (Rory Cochrane - "A Scanner Darkly") starts off his day preparing breakfast for his working wife Lexi (Mary McCormack). After he sees her off he sets about his usual routine around the house. But today everything is going to change. His music station is interrupted by the news bulletin that a series of explosions have shaken LA. He looks out his front door and sure enough smoke clouds are rising from the urban centre, and the streets are plagued with emergency services rushing in to help. Brad attempts to leave his suburban area and to rescue his wife - who he hasn't been able to contact. But the police won't let him leave the area. Brad, along with a neighbour, prepare to wait it out, but then comes the report that everyone has to seal their homes as the chemicals from the bombs are now airborne. They seal themselves in, but when Lexi arrives looking for help, Brad has to make a devastating decision - does he let her in and run the risk of contracting the infection, or does he leave her outside to the mercy of the army and scientists roaming the neighbourhood looking for the infected.

"Right at Your Door" is a very intense movie with brilliant performances from Rory Cochrane and Mary McCormack. Many people have discredited the film saying that it becomes boring and monotonous during the last forty minutes or so but I found it to be very engrossing and nerve-wrecking all through and never found it to be boring. That being said, it's not something I'd watch again. Intense and very interesting, it's worth checking out at least once.
Super Reviewer
July 21, 2010
A zombie without the zombies and dirty bombs in place of the zombies.
Super Reviewer
January 24, 2010
This gets boring from the middle. I expected it to be exciting.
Super Reviewer
November 19, 2007
It felt suprisingly scary considering how realistic it felt, and how that kinda thing could totally happen. The guy gets a fun F-you at the end too.
Super Reviewer
½ May 13, 2009
"Right at Your Door" is American dirty bomb version of the British atom bomb film "Threads", except it is not nearly as frighteningly powerful.

I often wondered what happened to the kid in "Empire Records" who blew the register money in Atlantic City, well turns out he's in low budget flicks and doing a damn good job at it. He manages to eek out that careful balance of caring for his wife while simultaneously secretly caring about his own life slightly more.

The beginning is tense and fast paced, but is quite misleading as the middle begins to get slow until it almost stops and so slow indeed that you expect a death scene to come soon. Instead, another bit of thrill is injected, which steadily rises to the twist conclusion.

The photography could have been a hell of a lot better, and the handheld technique didn't have to be so obvious. If the production could afford all that plastic and masking tape, it could have afforded some steadicam attachments. The deadly toxic ash and the quarantined neighborhood are nicely done though. The one weakness is that in the beginning when the main character is trying to reach his wife, the streets are quite bare and not littered with panic, which is the main tell that this is a low budget venture. Some may criticize the art direction on the primary set, but I think it is done incredibly well because it uses the same materials that a real person forced to improvise would use.

The film tries to tug at many emotional heartstrings, and it succeeds in the first reel in conveying the panic and then the dilemma, but it never drives home the worry of contamination and death. Despite the lack of overall terror (especially when compared to a film like Threads), I like the ending and thus give this an additional half star.
Super Reviewer
½ February 21, 2009
An excellent film that shoves you right in the screen along with the characters. On the radio a man hears about some explosions happening across LA. From there we follow the man. He is always at a distance from the immediate threat, but as more news comes in it becomes tense and involving. The low budget really serves a simple but effective idea well. The film shows the panic, the irrationality and most of all the fear of such an event. It keeps science on the back burner so that it can focus on the moral issues it raises. What would you do in a situation like this? The characters are real and easily to relate to. Unfortunately is offers up a pretty judgmental and distracting twist to tie up the ending. Great idea, great acting and a great experience.
Super Reviewer
½ March 12, 2008
Food for thought: Does Right at Your Door espouse conservative or liberal ideals? The first half of the film courts that popular Republican dogma - "we've gotta tighten national security/install a democracy/wage war to protect ourselves from another terrorist attack!" seems to be the implied sentiment here. But once the men in the gas masks start showing up, the government's role in all this develops a dubious side.

Perhaps I'm the only one who approached Right at Your Door from this angle...at least, after the fact. The movie is a tense and involving thriller that has two great lead performances on characters that probably weren't interesting enough to deserve them. They're not the cause of the movie's eventual unraveling, so much as the shitty twist ending, the order du jour for young film-makers be they Hollywoodian or otherwise. It is really a shame that Right at Your Door was not brought to a simpler close.

I hope this brings Chris Gorak success in the future. He's a pretty damn decent writer and director, and has a great eye behind the camera. (This movie won Best Cinematography at Sundance, for good reason - toxin-covered Los Angeles never looked so beautiful.) As many directorial debuts are, this is a flawed work, but also highly watchable. Give it a shot.
Super Reviewer
July 14, 2007
Well acted, tense and somewhat unsettling little movie about a dirty bomb explosions in L.A. Done remarkably well for a low budget film, but half a star off for the pointless twist ending.
Super Reviewer
½ June 17, 2007
Intelligent thriller which sidesteps its low budget constraints and focuses on its great central idea.
Super Reviewer
½ October 2, 2008
[font=Century Gothic]"Right at Your Door" starts on a typical Southern California morning as underemployed musican Brad(Rory Cochrane) sees his wife Lexi(Mary McCormack) off to work. Soon after, there is news on the radio about explosions downtown. Brad makes a futile attempt to get to his wife but at least he makes a convenient stop at a hardware store before it closes. Not having anywhere else to go, Alvaro(Tony Perez), the neighbor's handyman, invites himself in and the two debate whether to start sealing the house against any potential chemical agents. Finally, Brad agrees to do so...[/font]
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[font=Century Gothic]...and then the Mrs. returns.[/font]
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[font=Century Gothic]"Right at Your Door" is a taut, often frightening movie that does get bogged down in spots. While it may seem stagy, it is filmed effectively with a handheld camera to simulate claustrophobia, showing what can be accomplished on a limited budget.[/font]
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[font=Century Gothic]The movie's best accomplishment is in bringing a terrorist attack down to a personal level, telling the story almost exclusively from Brad's point of view. In doing this, it asks some very tough questions of us all. Are there are any right or wrong choices to make under these circumstances, with panic and sentiment weighing equally on one's mind? I think all one can do is to hope our government does know what it is doing...[/font]
August Seria
Super Reviewer
½ May 14, 2012
Right at your door was a realistic view in an apocalyptic scenario, made even more real with the unknown actors' great performances.
Super Reviewer
February 3, 2007
Decently acted "what if?" film, which cleverly hides its limited budget. However, the middle section drags and although the promised "twist ending" is clever and true to the plot, it wasn't the jaw-on-the-floor ending the TV and tabloid marketing had promoted.
Francisco G.
Super Reviewer
½ May 13, 2014
It's a fairly interesting take on the post apocalyptic genre, but it's just bland and insipid at that. The cinematography is ugly, the action bit at the start is just a guy driving around looking concerned, the secondary cast is disposable, but features a good enough chemistry between the two leads and interesting situations between the two. However, that doesn't really save a very inert movie, albeit confident on the execution of it's ideas.
Super Reviewer
June 26, 2010
It's just a normal day in LA for Brad and his wife Lexi as his sends her off he has no clue that this day is gonna turn into one of the worst for both of em as Brad is sitting around the house news breaks that a bunch of dirty bombs have exploded and residents are told to lock up there house but where is Lexi? stuck outside as Brad has quarantined the house around them and now must spend what could be there last moments cut off by a thin piece of plastic. Obviously filmed on a low budget this movie turned out to be really well done the story of the husband and wife keeps you interested all the way right up until the end really worth a watch as a highly recommend it
Super Reviewer
½ March 3, 2010
I'll admit it's probably not very easy to write an engaging story about a housebound man, but I've seen better efforts (Batman Begins).
A series of "dirty bombs" go off in LA and suddenly common sense and logic are forgotten as people either cry, swear or shout a lot. It doesn't get interesting until the twist and even that's nothing special. Batman Begins had a far better twist, I still can't believe Bruce Wayne was secretly Batman.
Super Reviewer
½ September 15, 2009
Pretty intense drama about a married couple named Brad and Lexi played by Rory Cochrane (Dazed and Confused) and Mary McCormack (Mystery, Alaska). Who live a seemingly normal life in the hills of Los Angeles. One morning Brad wakes up and fixes coffee for his wife and sends her on her way to work, all is well until Brad hears an emergency news report saying that several bombs have been detonated in downtown Los Angeles and several other surrounding areas. Thrown into a panic Bard tries desperately to find out if his wife is okay, and much to his dismay he cannot reach her. Things are made worse after it is learned that the bombs are in fact "dirty" and have sent a deadly toxic gas into the air. Trapped inside Brad barricades himself in his home, it is only after he's lost hope that Lexi appears at his doorstep. Faced with a heartbreaking decision does Brad let his contaminated wife inside or does he try and help her get help all while sealed off inside the confines of his home from the deadly gases. What follows is a series of very suspenseful and dramatic moments acted very well by the film's two main stars, all leading up to an unexpected and tragic ending.
With a story like this one we think huge effects and explosions of Michael Bay like proportions but what you get is one couple's perspective from a very huge and catastrophic event. Which is a welcome change of pace, to effects-driven disaster movies that have lots of action and no story, or character development, quite the opposite for Right at Your Door which is a very well written character study about how both the love of his wife, and survival instincts conflict inside a man's head sending him on an emotional roller coaster as he believes he is watching the woman he loves die right before his eyes.
Super Reviewer
July 12, 2009
An interesting idea that started great then the film goes amazingly downhill.
The twist ending was unable to save the film from being yet another example of a good idea let down by a poorly constructed script.
Watch it at your own risk.
Super Reviewer
December 12, 2007
Here's an interesting and suspenseful story plot about one man's experiences and struggles in an extraordinary chaotic event. One that has you thinking about what you would do in a similar situation, and what extremities would you factor in order to survive (regardless of the outcome). Intriguing story plot!! Brilliant conclusion. Rory Cochrane is great. A must-see!
Super Reviewer
April 15, 2008
It was like a footnote to a episode of 24
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