When a devoted husband and father is left home alone for the weekend, two stranded young women unexpectedly knock on his door for help. What starts out as a kind gesture results in a dangerous seduction and a deadly game of cat and mouse.
A sexy thriller from director Eli Roth and written for the screen by Eli Roth & Nicolás López & Guillermo Amoedo and story by Anthony Overman and Michael Ronald, KNOCK KNOCK stars Keanu Reeves as the family man who falls into temptation and Lorenza Izzo and Ana de Armas as the seductresses who wreak havoc upon his life, turning a married man’s dark fantasy into his worst nightmare. KNOCK KNOCK will be released by Lionsgate Premiere in theaters and On Demand on October 9th.
Knock Knock is an American erotic horror thriller film directed by Eli Roth, who also co-wrote the script with Guillermo Amoedo and Nicolás López. The film stars Keanu Reeves, Lorenza Izzo, and Ana de Armas. The film was released on October 9, 2015, by Lionsgate Premiere, and it is a remake of Peter Traynor’s 1977 film Death Game.
I’ve always been fascinated by the desire to leave your safe environment to explore the world and the terrible dangers that can lead to. My first films, “Cabin Fever,” “Hostel” and “The Green Inferno” all follow intelligent but sheltered upper-middle class students who travel to all corners of the Earth in search of life experience and wind up wishing they had never left home.
After filming in an isolated village in the Peruvian Amazon for “The Green Inferno,” I realized I couldn’t go much further. This led me to wonder…what happens when trouble comes to your own home? What if temptation arrives at your doorstep, and once you let it inside the safest place you know – where you feel completely in control – you unknowingly unleash Pandora’s Box? What happens when your own private world you control gets taken over by an outside force and everything you’ve built begins to crumble around you?
It is only human nature to want what we do not have. Being in my early 40’s, I now more than ever see a disconnect with the younger generation, (generation iPhone) than ever. With the advent of social media, teenagers sexualize themselves to such a degree that it’s difficult to discern whether they are 14 or 24 simply from their social media pictures. In a world where everyone has seen everything and nothing shocks, an entire generation of kids strive for attention and validation through social media, each one trying to get more likes than the next.
For someone my age, Instagram, Vine, and Twitter do not matter. Even Facebook is not as much of a priority if you are an established professional with a family. But that doesn’t mean the people in their 40’s aren’t curious about that generation. Time and time again my married friends have turned to me slyly and asked “what’s it like? Are the girls their 20’s that much crazier today than when we were 20?”
Social connectivity has shattered boundaries of what ages are appropriate to date, and social media has made it permissive for everyone to openly “like” each other in ways they never could before. In the age of internet pornography, nothing seems shocking when everything that was once banned is now available on your phone. What if you were happily married with kids, but for just one night left the safe, comfortable environment you’ve spent a lifetime building to see what it’s like to have sex with this new, open generation to whom nothing seems shocking?
With KNOCK KNOCK I wanted to show just how fragile the world we spend a lifetime building actually is. What if you did everything right – you went to a good school, you dated nice people until you met the right person, you settled down, you built a good life for yourself…and still, you have the sinking feeling you’re missing out on something.
What if you wanted to tempt fate just for one night thinking you could get away with it? I wanted the audience to sympathize with Evan, our main character, and to secretly make the same choices he would make. Evan tries to do the right thing, and yet, he can’t ever truly say no to these girls who show up at his door and seduce him.
Evan constantly thinks he’s in control, and that’s his fatal flaw. People in their 40’s have no idea the damage one can cause with social media, because they’ve never had to think defensively in that way. Teenagers today have grown up with the threat of someone ruining your life over a picture or a text message, so as a result they know how to destroy someone. It’s a skill you have to develop as a teenager today, but it’s not one that would even be in a character like Evan’s consciousness.
Artwork plays a major role in the film. My mother is an artist, and I grew up with her paintings all over our house, and eventually was lucky enough to see them in galleries in New York, Boston and Chicago. I’ve seen first-hand how difficult it is to create, and what it takes to fill an empty canvas with imagination and soul. In fact, my mother in many ways is my biggest influence on my own career as a writer / director.
Yet art, at the core of it, might simply be a concept that does not exist. Proving the existence of art is like proving the existence of God. The evidence is everywhere, yet it only exists because someone labels it as art. To one person a sculpture might be a priceless work of art, yet to another it might just be colored plaster. I am well aware of my reputation for bodily harm and dismemberment, and with KNOCK KNOCK wanted to substitute chopping off the sculpture’s limbs for a human’s.
I find the destruction of art much more painful, because the idea that no matter what we create it’s completely worthless to another person is a very real and terrifying one. Everything we find sacred in a work of art could mean absolutely nothing to a complete stranger, who would destroy it all with a swing of the hammer without a second thought. I saw the artwork as a metaphor for Evan’s relationship, for his family, for the life he built, and once he lets in a dangerous force, he risks losing everything.
I wanted KNOCK KNOCK to be a film that would stand the test of time. I wanted to create something powerful, provocative, and at the same time fun. I don’t want to vilify the girls, I want the audience to sympathize with them too, for they were victims of someone’s game, and what they do to Evan they see as therapy. I wanted to see “Fatal Attraction” in the age of social media, when what you do in the privacy of your own home suddenly becomes property of the entire world.
Directed by: Eli Roth
Starring: Keanu Reeves, Lorenza Izzo, Ana de Armas, Ignacia Allamand, Aaron Burns, Colleen Camp
Screenplay by: Guillermo Amoedo, Nicolás López
Production Design by: Marichi Palacios
Cinematography by: Antonio Quercia
Costume Design by: Elisa Hormazábal
Art Direction by: Fernando Alé
Music: Manuel Riveiro
MPAA Rating: R for disturbing violent behavior, strong sexual content, nudity and language.
Studio: Lionsgate Films
Release DateB October 9, 2015