"P2" is about a young businesswoman, Angela Bridges (Rachel Nichols) who finds herself working late on Christmas Eve in her New York city office building. The last one to leave the building, she finds her car won't start. Parked on level P2 in the building's underground parking garage, she runs into a security guard, Thomas (Wes Bentley) who tries to help fix the car. After the failed attempt, Angela is scrambling to try and make it home where her family is waiting for her. But when she becomes locked in the parking garage, she finds herself in a fight for survival when Thomas, a psychologically unstable man, kidnaps her and intends to spend Christmas Eve with her... if she can stay alive through the night.
While it may have a rather obscure title, "P2" is a pretty solid thriller that came about just in time for the holiday season. I enjoy Christmas-set horror movies, there's something gleeful about yuletide scares for fans of horror films, and I typically tend to enjoy them, "P2" being no exception. And while the fact that it takes place during Christmas has nothing to do with the story whatsoever, it gives the movie a little boost of something different. The film starts out at a steady pace and not much happens for the first thirty or so minutes, and then afterwards things begin to kick in and the thrills and spills start up, welcomely, of course.
Written by Alexandre Aja, a French filmmaker who brought us "High Tension" and "The Hills Have Eyes" remake, the story is something halfway original. It takes the typical struggle between a psychopathic man and a strong-willed woman and places it in an unusual environment which provides for some pretty unique occurrences and plenty of great opportunity. Parking garages are creepy places anyway, with their low-ceilings, cement walls, and dark and damp atmosphere - so why not set a horror movie there? After our protagonist is kidnapped, the antics between her and the psychopath ensue, and I felt that this was fairly well-written. The pacing has a few problems, things would become extremely intense, and then the movie would slow to almost a stop, then kick in again, which became a little tiring, but it wasn't enough to kill the film for me.
Rachel Nichols performs well in her first leading role here, playing the strong-willed Angela, and Wes Bentley is plays the quirky, offbeat character (it somewhat reminded me of his character in "American Beauty", just in a psychopathic-murderer form) well. Both actors have talent, and do well throughout the majority of the film, although some moments do come off as a little campy - I'm sure the writing had a little fault with this too, but it isn't a major problem. It's not a terribly gory film, either. There are a few pretty nasty moments, but they are for the most part few and far between. The atmosphere is damp and dark as a parking garage, and the Christmas setting (brought through with some Christmas tunes to play along with a few scenes) is effective and neat. There are a handful of excellent and memorable scenes (the car-ride murder scene and elevator being most clever). Most of the movie is what could be classified as a 'psychological thriller' in which Thomas is playing a cat-and-mouse game with Angela. The ending is quite the kicker, and I thought it was a good way to close the story.
Overall, "P2" is an above-average horror/thriller. It delivers enough thrills to keep the audience entertained, and is well-written for the most part. The premise may not be terribly original, but the main thing that this film has got going for it is it's unusual but effective setting (that is made well-use of). I enjoyed the majority of this film, and while it is a bit campy in moments, overall it's a fun movie that horror fans should be advised to check out in conjunction with the holiday season. This will likely fall under my little list of must-see Christmas-themed horror movies, because it's one of the better ones. 7/10.
21 out of 38 found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.