“A husband and wife’s weekend in a mid-century modern vacation rental turns deadly when the husband discovers the owner is a psychopath with a backyard of buried secrets and designs on his wife.”

Director: Sonja O’Hara
Writer: Mike Stern
Staring: Stephen Lang, Shane West, Bruce Dern, Chelsea Gilligan, Sarah Hay
Release Date: October 24, 2022

Do not watch Mid-Century (2022).

The Peacock original mystery/thriller continues a dangerous slide that the streaming service finds itself on when it comes to original movies. Peacock had back-to-back fumbles starting Kevin Bacon withYou Should Have Left (2020) andThey/Them (2022). Sick (2023 got the originals back on the right track, but Mid-Century essentially assures that Peacock should never be trusted with original films of this genre.

I know that making a movie is hard. I know getting to the start line of a movie is really tough. With that being said, Mid-Century is really a terrible movie. It really is god awful. Everything about this movie is tough to watch. The writing is a slog, and suspense is non existent, and the payoff is nothing writing home about. Mid-Century is not even “Mid” as the kids would say. It is “Low”. It is “Underground”.

Alice Dodgeson M.D. (Chelsea Gilligan) is looking for a new job and it has brought she and her partner Tom Levin (Shane West) to a seemingly perfect suburban area. All of the houses are symmetrical, clean and pristine. Tom, an architect by trade, is absolutely obsessed because these houses were designed by acclaimed home-builder Frederick Banner (Stephen Lang).

Tom and Alice rent out an Air BnB during her interview process, and while she is in the hospital trying to make friends and prove herself, Tom is left at home. Naturally this is where things can go a little crazy. Tom notices books being toppled, doors being open, and other odds and ends.

It turns out that the house is haunted by a former lover of Frederick Banner. Marie Verdin (Sarah Hay) fell prey to Fredrick’s obsessive tendencies, and she paid the ultimate price. She is a vessel in this house, living most of the time with the house’s owner Eldridge. Eldridge Banner (Mike Stern).

Banner never left the home, and now Tom is trapped in the house with him, and Marie. He has to deal with a crazy person, a ghost, and other struggles in an attempt to get answers. He finds them, but they are not always what he expects. His mysterious eventually influence Alice, who returns home to find her Tom nowhere to be found.

Shane West is a staple of bad movies. He was in the utterly forgettable Escape The Field (2022), which was another Peacock original. Remember him as the roided out guy? He moved over to Hulu for Maneaster (2022), which was a shark movie that didn’t breach the so bad it’s good barrier.

I’ve seen early things in his career like Dracula 2000 (2000), which I don’t remember anything about. West was an uncredited part of Ocean’s 11 (2001) which is a crazy plot twist, but he went back to his domain with A Walk To Remember (2002). Who remember being young and and watching this to appease a girl you liked? Couldn’t have been be.

West takes less parts as the 2000s and 2010s unfold, but there is one in there that I will stand up for. Shane West took part in The League Of Extraordinary Gentleman (2003), which I will still watch clips off to this day. Don’t ask me why, but I caught it at the perfect time in my life and I won’t soon forget it.

But getting back to Mid-Century, West does not have the suaveness to pull off the asshole, nerdy, rich architect guy. he does not have the looks or the swagger to be hooking up with his assistant. He just doesn’t have…it. I am killing Shane for something he can do better than me, but right now he is riding on a subway line that is stopping at piss-poor movies every station.

Shane West gets the most screen time, but the most important character of the movie is Frederick Banner, who is played by one of two immediately identical faces. (Did you know that two-time Oscar nominated Bruce Dern is in Mid-Century for have a second?). Stephen Lang is the immediately recognizable face. This man who plays Quaritch, the major bad guy in Avatar (2009) and Avatar: The Way Of Water (2022), the most and third most profitable movies of all time. This man also plays Frederick Banner, who is the bad guy in arguably the worst movie of 2022. Stephen Lang had both of this movies come out in the same year. Hollywood is crazy.

Mid-Century was directed by Sonja O’Hara, a director, writer and atress who is making her way in Hollywood. O’Hara is Emmy nominated, but Mid-Century is not the one she will be sending to any sort of academy. She is young, learning, and she will get better. I believe in that.

Mid-Century is such a disaster of a movie that I would not even recommend putting it on to fall asleep to. It continues the rather bad trend of Peacock original films and it proves that even actors in the most profitable movies in cinema history still take an east paycheck every once in a while.


Rating: 0.5 out of 5.

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