Film Will Make You Feel Like There’s ‘No Exit’


Tara Coffey, Movie Critic

You are stranded in a remote rest stop in the middle of nowhere during a dangerous blizzard with four strangers. There is no phone service, nowhere to run, and you just found a little girl kidnapped and bound in the back of a van. One of these strangers is the kidnapper and tormentor, and you have no way to call for help to save yourself or this girl. What do you do?
Well, that is exactly the situation Darby finds herself in during the heart-stopping thriller “No Exit.” Taylor Adam’s wrote a phenomenal chilling book titled “No Exit,” which has recently been adapted into a Hulu Original Movie.
As someone who was in love with this book, I knew I had to stream this movie as soon as it was released on Feb. 25, and let me just say that I was not disappointed. Although there were a few moments during the film that left the audience wanting more, the overall story between the novel and the movie were the same and left the audiences on the edge of their seats.
The novel, written by Taylor Adams, is by far one of my favorite books of all time. If you are a fan of thriller novels, this one should not be skipped. The book leaves readers with a sense of fear through every page. From the first chapter, we learn of the main character, Darby, and the struggles she has with her family. Darby has recently had a falling-out with her mother, and when she learns her mother is dying in the hospital, Darby decides she needs to rush home from college to visit her mother before she dies.
During her trip home, Darby finds herself stuck at a rest stop due to blizzard conditions, leaving her unable to continue the drive safely. While at this rest stop, she sees a young girl kidnapped and tied up in the back of a van belonging to one of the other strangers who also happens to be stuck at the rest area.
The story follows Darby as she attempts to survive the night and save the little girl–all while also trying to stop the villain. This novel is highly recommended and will leave you wanting more and unable to put it down.
The movie, however, changes small details from the opening credits. The movie begins with Darby in a rehabilitation center working a program for drug recovery. This change in detail, from Darby rushing home from college to breaking out of rehab to visit her mother, makes sense to viewers.
When Darby finds the girl, the fact that she is a recovering drug addict who ran away from rehab, makes it a little more difficult for Darby to be believed. Although this change does make sense, it also does not make the character as lovable as her portrayal in the novel. The representation of Darby is more stand-offish and bitter in the movie, which overall, makes her less of a person that audiences root for.
Another difference between the novel and the movie is that audiences are not able to get as emotionally attached to each of the characters. As with most books adapted into movies, audiences do not get inside the heads of characters as we do when we read about them.
For instance, while reading a novel we can work through the thoughts of each character and understand why they act the way they do or why they follow certain motives. We can follow certain processes and are able to emotionally connect to characters. This makes certain moments more mind-blowing and terrifying to readers, since we learn more of the characters. Throughout the movie, we do not get the thought process for each character, which did not make the surprises as intense as when we read about them.
The acting in the movie, however, is highly praised. The portrayal of Ash, by Danny Ramirez, was out of this world. Ramirez captured the essence of the character and delivered his performance in a way that left audiences with a chill. Havana Rose Liu, who portrayed Darby, also played her character with flair and gave her character strength in a tough situation.
Overall, the acting in this film is outstanding. It allows the audiences to root for certain characters and fear for others. Overall, if you did not read the book, the movie will still leave you wanting more. The movie follows the basic story and did not change any key parts from the original story.
Even though the movie seems to move at a faster pace than needed and does not go into as much detail as one could hope for, it is recommended to watch it at least once. If you are a fan of suspenseful thriller movies and novels, “No Exit” should be at the top of your list! This novel is by far one of the best novels written, as I finished it in one day after not being able to put it down. Follow Darby on her spine-chilling journey in ‘No Exit,’ available at almost every bookstore and streaming now on Hulu