Jamie Woodhouse Panic Room Textual Analysis Panic Room is a 2002 thriller film directed by David Fincher and written by David Koepp, the plot revolves around a mother and daughter who, on the first night of living in their new house in Manhattan, find themselves having to flee into the house’s panic room and wait out three men who have broken into the house to get at some money hidden within by the previous owner. The opening title sequence quickly establishes that this is a thriller film, it has all you’d expect from the genre wrapped up in about two or three minutes. Howard Shore’s score sets the tone of the piece – dark and foreboding strings with a recurring theme throughout and a tense orchestral sound, planting the idea that bad things are going to happen, his music has a strong feel to it which works well with the close ups of buildings and interacts with the footage as we scale down the buildings to ground level where we meet our protagonists the music gets even more intense and then fades out. Like most thrillers, Panic Room plays on common fears and runs with them like heights – used in the opening sequence through vertigo shots – and strangers in the house and children in danger which are key parts of the plot, it helps the audience to connect with the characters because they imagine what would happen if they were in that situation, “Oh my god that could happen to me.” Mirrors appear a lot in thriller films sometimes in the form of reflective windows like in Panic Room, the titles are reflected onto the windows of the tall office buildings that fill up Manhattan, there’s no escaping these buildings it all looks spread out but they’re suffocatingly close, again playing on fears of claustrophobia. Once we’re on the ground we meet our protagonists Meg Altman – played by Jodie Foster – and her daughter Sarah Altman, played by Kristen Stewart, hurrying along trying not to get swallowed up by the bustling crowds of Manhattan on the way to their new house.