An illegal immigrant moves to Ohio in desperation and ends up trapped
in a haunted house by sadistic landlords who worship an Aztec god.
No One Gets Out Alive (2021)
Directed by Santiago Menghini
Written by Jon Croker and Fernanda Coppel
Starring Cristina Rodlo, Marc Menchaca, David Figlioli,
David Barrera, Vala Noren, Cosmina Stratan, Moronke Akinola
Based on the novel by Adam Nevill
There appeared to be a great deal of potential in this 2021 Netflix original that fell off the radar almost immediately. It's definitely unique in its vision, dealing with Aztec gods and all that, but that's not until the last twenty minutes of the film. No One Gets Out Alive takes the slow burn concept literally, and drags out a super dull story to an insane degree. There's an entire subplot about our main character's relationship with her cousin's family that is mentioned one time and goes nowhere, despite a brief appearance by the cousin towards the end only for him to die. With so many neat ideas floating around the film, I had higher expectations.
Ambar (Rodlo) is a Mexican immigrant who had to put her life on hold when her mother got sick, meaning she never got to go to college or apply for U.S. citizenship. She moves to Ohio and tries to get a fake ID, but she gets screwed over repeatedly. She finds a cheap apartment in a building that advertises "Women Only" and is run by a bizarre pair of brothers, Red (Menchaca) and Becker (Figlioli). Ambar starts experiencing a presence in the building, and eventually realizes Red and Becker have an Aztec god trapped in the basement and are feeding it sacrifices to prolong their lives and heal their sickness. It's a pretty jarring left turn, but the ending is crazy and over-the-top. It nearly saves the movie.
No One Gets Out Alive could've been really cool if the screws had been tightened. The movie overdoses on atmosphere and relies on some jump scares and the occasional ghost until the end of the movie. And I'll give credit where it's due. That Aztec god is a freaky design. If only we'd gotten more of it.