Courtney Howard is a LAFCA, CCA, OFCS and AWFJ member, as well as a Rotten Tomatometer-approved film critic. Her work has been published on Variety, She Knows and Awards Circuit.
Courtney Howard // Film Critic
Not too long ago, back in 2019, director Adam Robitel’s ESCAPE ROOM combined the intelligence of gameplay with inventive kills and ingenious set pieces driven by the character-forward spectacle. It was fun and provided the puzzle pieces for a burgeoning franchise – something along the lines of the crowd-pleasing FINAL DESTINATION series. His hugely entertaining sequel, ESCAPE ROOM: TOURNAMENT OF CHAMPIONS, arrives just in time to deliver Summer thrills. And it’s just as fun as the first.
In the gripping, edge-of-your-seat horror-actioner, Zoey (Taylor Russell) and Ben (Logan Miller) have walked away the winners of the deadly games but continue to deal with the psychological torture the rooms inflicted on them. However, they’ve figured out clues to the major mysterious organization puppetting the strings – Minos – and are determined to take them down. Their Sisyphean quest leads them to New York and unwittingly roped into yet another series of puzzle rooms with life-or-death stakes. This time the pair are matched against other themed-room champions, including Rachel (Holland Ellis), a clever empath with a rare disorder where she feels no pain.
At the recent virtual press day, I was able to speak with Robitel, Miller and Roden about the highlights of making a film that transcends the pop-culture trend that initially spawned this series.
Our interview with Adam Robitel:
Our interview with Logan Miller and Holland Roden:
ESCAPE ROOM: TOURNAMENT OF CHAMPIONS opens in theaters on July 16.