(On Cable TV, March 2012) Straightforward genre exercise The Resident doesn’t have a lot of meat on its narrative bones (nor much credibility in its lead crazy-man antagonist), but it has the notable merit of being fairly well-executed, and featuring a few good actors in crucial roles. Hilary Swank stars as a medical resident dealing with an obsessed suitor/landlord, but Jeffrey Dean Morgan almost looks like he’s having fun as the improbably psychotic villain. (Meanwhile, though, Christopher Lee is a bit wasted in a very small role.) Once the story is set up (rather effectively through a rewind-flashback) as another one of those acquaintances-from-hell psychological thriller, it practically writes itself all the way to the overlong extended-fight conclusion. What saves The Resident from unqualified mediocrity, however, is the rather stylish direction and cinematography. It’s not great art, but it’s quite a bit better than many examples of the low-budget sub-genre, and it brings at least one layer of interest to the film. As for the rest, well, it’s the kind of exploitative women-in-danger film that’s been made and seen countless times. It’ll do as a way to waste time and it may even feel a bit better than most through sheer visual polish… but there just isn’t much to it.