The Roommate | Film review
This dorm-room Single White Female won't frighten anyone beyond inbound freshmen.
Roommates can be such a pain. When they’re not eating your food or borrowing your stuff without asking, they’re putting your pets in the dryer and slicing up your ex-lovers with a box cutter. In this dorm-room spin on Single White Female, bland beauty Kelly slowly realizes that her roomie has become dangerously, desperately enamored of her. Meester plays this mousy maniac as a kind of clingy nuisance; apart from eruptions of violent rage, she basically acts like a jealous girlfriend, chastising the object of her obsession for staying out too late and not returning her phone calls. Where’s a real fatale like Jennifer Jason Leigh when you need her?
The Roommate unfolds as a campfire cautionary tale for conceited coeds: Don’t get too chummy with that wallflower on the bottom bunk—she might get the wrong idea. The film banks on its target audience being both titillated and creeped out by sapphic desire; director Christiansen stages the obligatory lesbian makeout session after a full hour of milking Meester’s stares for maximum discomfort. Meanwhile, our heroine falls for a sensitive fratboy (Gigandet, a poor man’s James Franco); they meet cute when he spills a beer on her. Trash of the tamest variety, The Roommate might elicit a few mild shudders from dorm-bound freshmen. All others will feel like putting stiletto heels through their eyes.