Channel surfing to find something worth watching, I stumbled upon 1408. Another movie created by horror genius, Steven King, I was once again left afraid of the dark before falling asleep. Starring John Cusack and Samuel L. Jackson, the movie is very well put together. John Cusack plays the character of a writer. After suffering the death of his young daughter he starts writing books about the scariest and most haunted places to visit and stay at. All of his books are based on stays at cemeteries and classic spooky hotels with claims of spooks terrorizing guests and rooms. A perfect set up to any horror film.
Never having a real encounter with anything paranormal, John Cusack is led to hold the belief that ghosts and the like do not exist. Upon returning home from some field research, his is sent a postcard from the Dolphin Hotel simply reading "Do not enter room 1408." He chuckles to himself as he quickly realizes that 1 + 4 + 0 + 8 = 13. Though not able to forget about the strange postcard, he calls the Dolphin in New York to get some more information and possibly a reservation for room 1408. His call is immediately transferred to the manager. Anything he says about room 1408 to the hotel manager, he gets the same response, "That room is not available." The writer pushes and pushes, even asking for a date as far out as next summer for a reservation and he is hung up on.
The call only intriguing his curiosity even further, he gets in touch with his publisher and their attorney. After some research, they find that if the room is empty, the hotel has a legal obligation to let him stay in the room no matter what. Once Cusack knows that he is going to get his way, he does some of his own research on the hotel and it's gruesome history of events that all pertain to that one particular room. One horrific death after another, he is flooded with news articles with out having to dig very deep. Suicides; people jumping out of the windows, hanging themselves, cutting their wrists and throats; the list goes on and on.
Upon arriving at the Dolphin Hotel, he is met by the manager played by Samuel L. Jackson. In classic character that we all know and have grown to love, he tries to convince Cusack and even bribe him into not staying in room 1408. Cusack takes Jackson's warnings of the room as propaganda as other hotel managers and owners have done with him time and times again. After repeated pleadings for him to change his mind about the room, Cusack is given the only key to the room. The room where no one has ever lasted more than one hour. The writer is escorted up to the 14th floor by the manager. With the elevator on hold, Cusack steps off but Jackson does not follow suit, he won't even get off on that floor.
Entering the room with the gruesome knowledge of all 57 deaths in the room since it was built and pictures of the most violent ones in hand, he enters the room alone. Not one staff member will willingly enter room 1408 for any reason. Housekeeping is only allowed to enter the room in pairs, supervised and only for a 10 minute period of time max. One housekeeper that went in got trapped in the bathroom. When she came out, she was blind. For the small moment she was in there, the room drove her to gouging her own eyes out while laughing hysterically. But still, Cusack is determined he will stay the entire night. The room doesn't take long to begin making its acquaintance. When Cusack begins to change his mind, it's too late and there is no backing out.