[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/1408-le-film.jpg]]

->''"It's an evil fucking room."''
-->-- '''Gerald Olin'''

''1408'' is a 2007 PsychologicalHorror film directed by Mikael Håfström and starring Creator/JohnCusack and Creator/SamuelLJackson, based on a Creator/StephenKing short story by the same name.

Cusack plays horror writer Mike Enslin, who specializes in investigating supposedly haunted houses and other sites of supernatural activity, which he has documented previously in books like ''Ten Haunted Graveyards'' and ''Ten Haunted Mansions''. However, these investigations have yet to bear fruit in the form of confirmable sightings, leaving him pessimistic and jaded. Through an anonymous recommendation, Enslin learns about the Dolphin Hotel, in which no one has been able to stay even a single night (or even one hour) in one particular room - the eponymous 1408. According to his research, everyone who tries has committed suicide or died from anything from heart attacks to drowning. The manager, Gerald Olin, tries to warn him away from staying in that room, to no avail; Enslin is unconvinced by his warnings and tales, preferring to see things for himself. After all, [[TemptingFate what's the worst that could happen?]]

The short story [[Literature/FourteenOhEight has its own work page]].

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!! ''1408'' contains examples of:

* AdaptationExpansion: The original story has him in the room for about seventy minutes before he sets his shirt on fire (according to the text: it seems like it would be more like fifteen or twenty). The movie also expands more on Mike's motivations and what his life was like outside of ghost-hunting, and of course this is used to twist the knife further during his stay.
* AdultFear: For Enslin, when Katie was dying of a terminal disease, and not only could he not do anything to prevent it, but as an atheist he couldn't even take refuge in prayer.
* AirVentPassageway: Subverted. Not only are the vents incredibly cramped, not only does he fail to escape, but ''something chases him in the vents''...
* AlienGeometries: The film nods to the short story with a painting of a ship in a storm which, no matter how Enslin adjusts it, always appears to hang crooked.
* AllJustADream: [[spoiler:Subverted in the film.]] And done remarkably well, too--at the point in the film where this happens, [[spoiler:enough running time has elapsed that you might actually believe the movie was coming to an end.]]
* AndYouWereThere: When Mike realizes that the clerk at the post office and the hotel boy were the same person, the illusion starts to crumble.
* ArtisticLicenceLaw: The law supposedly preventing the hotel manager from refusing to rent the room out to anyone, ever. Of course, without that law there wouldn't be a movie, so it's genuinely "artistic licence" rather than research failure.
** It's stated these are civil rights laws, to prevent a hotel from refusing to admit someone (or give them an inferior room) on the basis of race, for instance.
* AttackOfTheKillerWhatever: In this case, a hotel room.
* BalconyEscape: Mike tries, and fails as the other windows all disappear from the wall.
* BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor: Enslin was looking for proof of the supernatural. '''He found it.'''
%%* BigNo: Kind of.
* BlankBook: When Enslin breaks down and opens the Gideon Bible, it's blank.
* CassetteCraze: Enslin keeps his notes on a portable tape recorder. In the original short story he states that he found that when camping in graveyards, cassettes were easier to use than paper.
* ChekhovsGun:
** Mike's habit of [[spoiler: keeping a cigarette handy for emergencies.]]
** At the beginning of the movie, [[spoiler:Enslin receives a bottle of cognac from Olin. This is later used to make the molotov cocktail to destroy the room]].
** Mike's description of the room on how completely unremarkable it is. By the time the film ends, every aspect he describes will be twisted into a vision of terror.
--->"I need you to send somebody to fix my thermostat. Room's on fire."
* CigaretteOfAnxiety: The protagonist has a cigarette stored behind his ear for these types of situations.
* CoversAlwaysLie: A minor example, but the poster shows an old-fashioned paddle key, as described in the book, with a complex head. The movie features a very ordinary key with the room number attached on a keychain.
* DangerousWindows:
** First, the window that slams shut on his hand hard enough to break the skin.
** Later, when Enslin tries to escape to the next room over by going out the window, he is unable to reach the expected next window over - and then sees that 1408's are the only two windows within about five miles of otherwise featureless wall. Naturally, the window tries to bite him again on the return trip.
* DeadpanSnarker: The Room itself.
-->'''Front Desk Clerk[[spoiler:!The Room]]''': [[FateWorseThanDeath You can choose to repeat this hour over and over again,]] [[DrivenToSuicide or you can take advantage of our express checkout system.]]
* DeathByAdaptation:
** [[spoiler:Enslin]] in the director's cut - he survives in the original short story.
** [[spoiler:The room itself]] in both cuts. In the short story it's still in good shape by the end--if rather [[AlienGeometries non-Euclidean at times]].
* DespairEventHorizon: Enslin reaches this after the vision of Katie dying in his arms. And ''the room keeps going''.
* DiedInYourArmsTonight: Just when Enslin thinks he might have his dead daughter back, she falls limp while he's hugging her - and then to twist the knife further, the radio startles him (again) and she crumbles into ash.
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: The entire premise itself (An evil location that draws people to it, then uses their own guilts and fears to drive them insane and kill them) it's basically if Stephen King wrote Silent Hill.
* DownerEnding: The original ending had [[spoiler: Enslin dying with the room. Test audiences [[FocusGroupEnding did not approve]], and this ending was reserved for the international releases.]]
* DramaticDrop: At the end, when [[spoiler:Enslin is listening to his notes while his wife is unpacking from a recent move. Her reaction to hearing the voice of their dead daughter on the tape is entirely understandable.]]
* DrivenToSuicide: A number of 1408's victims went out this way, and it tries like hell to induce this in Enslin through sheer psychological torture. It even offers him a noose. [[SarcasmMode How helpful of it.]]
* EldritchAbomination: The "good" news is that there are no ghosts involved. When Enslin refers to a phantom in the room, Olin sharply rebukes him, in the charming way that only Creator/SamuelLJackson can (see the quote at the top of this page) pull off. This arguably makes the movie even harder to watch. You desperately want ''something'' to hate for everything that's happening to Enslin, but hating a room is like, well, shouting at a minifridge. The good thing about this is that you're relieved that it's just this ''one'' room....
* EldritchLocation: Room 1408, the EldritchAbomination mentioned directly above, is a physical place. It messes up the reality of the place every time someone stays in there too long.
* EnclosedSpace: In the movie, after Enslin has been in the room for a while, the door simply refuses to open. Going out the window doesn't work, and there's something horrible in the ventilation ducts, so that's out. Oh, and the room ''actively hates him''.
* EvilPhone: ''"Five. This is five. Ignore the sirens. Even if you leave this room, you can NEVER leave this room. Eight. This is eight. We have killed your friends. Every friend is now dead. Six. This is six."''
* EyeScream: A cleaning lady who found herself locked in 1408's bathroom for four seconds used a pair of scissors to cut her own eyes out. What had she seen? No one knows. In the short story it was subtler yet in its own way scarier. She simply goes temporarily blind while cleaning the room, and yet she says "she's blind, but she can see the most awful colors".
* FaceOfAThug: [[spoiler: Inverted. The room looks rather nice before it goes to hell.]]
* FantasyKeepsake: After [[spoiler: Mike really escapes the room]], it could be thought that everything he went through was some kind of hallucination, with either a natural or supernatural cause-- except that his tape recorder has his daughter's voice on it.
* FateWorseThanDeath: [[spoiler:"You can choose to repeat this hour over and over again, or you can take advantage of our express checkout system".]]
* FauxAffablyEvil: The room itself. It offers Mike, in a very polite manner, the option to ''take advantage of its express checkout system'': showing him a rope to hang himself.
* {{Foreshadowing}}:
** When Enslin calls down to the front desk to request someone to fix his thermostat, he mentions that the [[spoiler:room is on fire.]]
** The recurring use of "We've Only Just Begun" by Creator/TheCarpenters.
** When Mike gets to the 14th floor, he ambles along through the corridors absent-mindedly, not looking where he's going, and inadvertently ends up [[spoiler: back at the elevators, right where he started.]]
* ForTheEvulz: The room's only motive apparently.
* FourIsDeath: 1+4+0+8=13---> 1+3=4
* FreezeFrameBonus: If you look closely at the Holy Bible right after Mike puts it down when he first enters the room, you'll see that the text on the cover is ''backwards''. This is the first sign that something's wrong.
* GeniusLoci: The room doesn't have anything evil in it. The room ''itself'' is evil.
* GroundhogDayLoop: [[spoiler: How the room put the screws to its residents' sanity.]]
* HauntedHouseHistorian: The hotel manager knows all the history of room 1408.
* HauntedTechnology: [[spoiler:At the end of the director's cut, Enslin's tape recorder recovered from the burnt-out shell of the titular hotel room finds its way to Sam Jackson's character. After listening to it for several seconds in his car, he jumps with fright upon seeing Enslin's charred corpse in his rear-view mirror, giving him a weary grin. Whether this is the room's malign influence spreading or simply Enslin seeing his last work completed remains unclear.]]
* HellHotel: Played with. Only the one room, and the owner does his best to explain the risks and discourage most people from going in there. The rest of the hotel is exceptionally pleasant. Hell, even the room (before it goes to shit) looks like a lovely spacious apartment.
* HopeSpot: The nightmare sequence late in the movie where [[spoiler:Enslin thinks he's escaped from the room.]]
* HorrorStruck: Mike's skepticism soon turns into a terror of realization.
* HollywoodAtheist: Enslin, though he was an atheist ''before'' his daughter passed away.
* IfJesusThenAliens: Mike doesn't believe in the supernatural, claiming even if it was real, there isn't a God to protect them from it. This comes back to bite him ''hard''.
* InnSecurity: "Even if you check out, you can never leave..."
* ItHasOnlyJustBegun: Featuring the Music/{{Carpenters}} as the voice of unfathomable evil.
* ItWontTurnOff: The clock radio, which keeps counting down even after Enslin pulls out the plug.
* KillItWithFire: Used in both the short story and the movie to escape the room... but in slightly different fashions. In a "blink and you miss it" foreshadowing, when the post office is being torn down to reveal the room, one of the bricks on the wall has "Burn it alive" written on it. This is also shown when the room is first encased in brick, outside the living area window [[spoiler: which is the only one in the room at the time]].
* KubrickStare: Mike at the end.
* LastUnsmokedCigarette: Literally. Enslin, who has quit smoking, keeps a cigarette behind his ear throughout the movie. [[spoiler: When Mike sets the room on fire and expects to die, he lights it up.]]
* LatexPerfection: The final nightmare sequence features the best variation ever, [[spoiler:executed by the room itself]].
* LaughingMad: In the movie, Enslin gets a massive case of the giggles [[spoiler:as the room burns around him]].
* LittlestCancerPatient: Katie Enslin, who dies from an unspecified disease (possibly terminal cancer) a year before the events of the movie, an event that spurred Enslin to travel around the country investigating haunted locations. The room's visions of Katie still alive with Mike in the room really seem designed to go for Mike's jugular.
* LittleNo: "Your wife will be here soon, Mr Enslin. We'll send her right up!"
* LivingStructureMonster: The entire hotel room itself, not just any specific piece of it, is evil.
* MagicCountdown: The clock radio counts down from 60 minutes. ''[[spoiler:[[AndIMustScream Over and over and over]].]]''
* MindRape: In the movie, it is implied that the room peers into the darkest corners of its current occupant's fears, regrets, and insecurities, and customizes itself to whatever nightmares will traumatize them the most.
* MirrorScare: Mike gets shocked by seeing the reflection of the man with a hammer in his bedroom mirror. He turns around to realize he is alone in the room.
* MissingFloor: The corporation running the Dolphin Hotel believes that ThirteenIsUnlucky, so they pretend there's no 13th floor. Hence Floor 13 is re-numbered as 14, putting the room of death on the appropriate level (with digits that also add to 13).
* OffscreenRealityWarp: Over the course of the hour, many details of the room change, starting subtly with a crooked hanging, but growing increasingly elaborate. Even the varying levels of cognac left in the bottle are likely intentional.
* OccultDetective: Enslin, in combination with IntrepidReporter.
* OnlySaneMan:
** Enslin believes himself to be this: he doesn't believe in the supernatural, claiming even if it was real, there isn't a God to protect them from it. He even wears a hat at one point with the words "Paranoia is just total awareness".
** In comparison, Olin is definitely this. He decided after the 4th death under his watch to have the room sealed and forbade any guests to check into it. He has 1408 serviced once a month, under his direct supervision, with maids working in pairs [[ProperlyParanoid and the door kept open at all times.]] He tells Enslin that he treats the room as if it were filled with toxic gas, and won't even go near it unless he has to.
* ParanoiaFuel: [[DiscussedTrope Discussed]] InUniverse. Enslin states that hotel rooms are inherently creepy due to the fact you have no idea who else has come and gone from them before you came, and who will come and go after. Any number of those people could have been sick or insane at the time they stayed, and several of them have probably already died.
* ParkingProblems: The protagonist takes up two stalls with his SUV in front of the post office at the beginning of the movie.
* ThePrecariousLedge: Mike tries to escape [[EldritchLocation The Room]] by climbing out onto the thin, windy ledge and shimmying into the next room over's window, only to discover that [[spoiler: there are '''no''' other windows, only an infinite sheer brick wall.]] He turns back, ending up in a LiteralCliffhanger thanks to the [[spoiler: ghost of a woman committing suicide by throwing herself out the window.]]
* PrecisionFStrike: "It's an ''evil'' fucking room."
* PrimalFear:
** Notably on the ''Heights and falling'' part...
** And the "Spectre of Death" part as well.
* PsychologicalTormentZone: What the room does to anyone who comes in. Enslin is taunted by memories of his dead daughter and his failed marriage, his father in a nursing home, and just generally tormented by the room's RealityWarper abilities.
* RaceLift: Mr. Olin, a white middle aged British man in the story is played by Creator/SamuelLJackson in the film. It's a very effective transition at that. If some British guy walked up to you and said 'Don't go in the room!', you'd probably do it out of spite. Now if ''Samuel L Jackson'' told you 'Don't go in the fucking room'...
* TheReasonYouSuckSpeech: Enslin receives one [[spoiler:from his minifridge.]]
* {{Room 101}}: See PsychologicalTormentZone above.
* SchmuckBait: The postcard Enslin receives, warning him "Don't go in 1408!"
* SchroedingersButterfly: The whole movie plays with this concept a lot but especially when [[spoiler:the main character (as well as the viewing audience) is tricked into thinking that he escapes the hotel room and has returned to a normal life before he realizes that it was all a vicious illusion. This arguably comes to an end when he burns the place down and escapes, but there's still the feeling that too could possibly be an illusion.]] Only in the theatrical ending, though. In the director's cut [[spoiler:it's clear he burned the entire room down, though at the cost of his life.]]
* ShellShockedVeteran: In the book, Enslin becomes totally paranoid after his experience. [[spoiler:He cannot sleep in strange places, he can't answer the phone, he can't allow any light from the sunrise or sunset into his room (as it reminds him of the horrible colors in the room), and he is an all-around broken individual.]]
* ShoutOut:
** To the fridge scene from Film/{{Ghostbusters}}.
** There's a small blink-and-you-miss-it reference to the original short story. When Enslin is walking down the hall to the room for the first time, he is shuffling through his notes. On one page is a line from the original short story from when Enslin first begins to feel the effects from the room.
---> "My brother was actually eaten by wolves one winter on the Connecticut Turnpike."
** "We've Only Just Begun", the song that becomes Enslin's MadnessMantra by proxy, is also played in the insane asylum where John Trent winds up after the events of ''Film/InTheMouthOfMadness'' ([[HowWeGotHere but at the beginning of the actual movie]]).
** After the climax and Enslin's escape, he starts seeing the ghosts of those trapped in 1408, including while having lunch in a restaurant in a frame-for-frame shout out to the ending of ''{{Film/Misery}}''. [[spoiler:Then he finds out he's not escaped after all.]]
** Enslin's attempt to find a rational explanation for the strange occurences, described by him as "Let's ''Literature/EncyclopediaBrown'' this bitch."
** When Enslin first enters the room, he asks his dictaphone "Where are the rivers of blood?" in reference to [[Film/TheShining another Stephen King adaptation set in a hotel]].
* SnowMeansCold: When it gets to freezing in the room, the floor is covered with a layer of snow. The sprinklers were on for awhile, but it should have generated some ice, not snow. But of course, the room's RealityWarper nature can explain such little details.
* SoundTrackDissonance: "We've Only Just Begun", indeed...
* SpitTake: In the movie, Enslin learns why you shouldn't drink anything when staying in a hotel room with a sadistic radio...
* SpiritualSuccessor: Replace "evil hotel room" with "disgraced opera singer's home" and you have Magnetic Rose from Katsuhiro Otomo's 'Memories'.
* SpookyPainting: Enslin finds three framed examples of Generic Hotel Artwork that get more menacing as the movie goes on. Specifically, [[spoiler:a painting of "constipated English lords" hunting changes to a scene wherein they are attacked by their hunting dogs, a ship being tossed about in on the high seas suddenly has a full crew fighting in vain against a storm, and a painting of a woman and her child becomes a painting of a woman ''breastfeeding her dead baby.'']]
* StrawVulcan: Subverted. Enslin presents himself, to himself and to others, as an atheist with a skeptical, highly rationalistic perspective on the world, but his true hamartia is his arrogance; he dismisses Olin's warnings without really considering them because his preconceptions make them sound to him like superstitious nonsense, i.e., ghost stories. A genuine skeptical rationalist would consider that Olin's experience as the hotel manager gives him a better claim to authority on the subject of the titular room than anyone who hasn't spent a night in it -- and, if nothing else, a genuine skeptical rationalist would consider that $800 worth of XO cognac is a hell of a long way to go to put over a ghost story.
* TakingYouWithMe: [[spoiler:When Enslin finally snaps, he makes a Molotov cocktail with the cognac given to him by the manager to burn himself and the room. He even says, "If I have to go down, I'm taking you with me.]]
* TemptingFate: As mentioned in the description above, Enslin insisted on staying in the room.
* ThatWasNotADream: [[spoiler:1408 is such a bastard that it let Mike think he'd been out for a week or more before informing him, nope, you're still here]].
* TheyLookJustLikeEveryoneElse: Nonhuman version here. Until weird things start happening, 1408 looks like any random (if very nice) hotel room.
* ThirteenIsUnlucky: All over this room. The hotel also doesn't have a 13th floor, to accommodate superstitious guests (actually a pretty common thing in the hotel business).
** 1 + 4 + 0 + 8 = 13.
** The room also keeps fiddling with the thermostat to extremely hot or cold temperatures, the digits of which always add up to thirteen.
** The numbers that the phone calls out add up to thirteen in pairs.
** Also, since the hotel doesn't have a thirteenth floor, the floor numbered fourteen, where the room is, is actually the thirteenth floor.
** The Dolphin is at 2254 Lexington. Also, the metal plate inside the door's lock is engraved with "6214." [[RuleOfThree And]], [[NoFourthWall the DVD's run time]] is 104 minutes, 8 seconds (1 + 04 + 8 = 13). The director's cut clocks in at around 112 minutes: 1 + 12 = 13.
** It came out on the 22nd in 2007. 2+2+2+0+0+7=13.
* ThroughTheEyesOfMadness: Shortly after the room starts to play tricks on Enslin, he starts to consider the possibility that he might be dreaming or hallucinating (and wonders if perhaps Olin put a hallucinogenic in the whiskey he gave him). This remains an entirely valid interpretation of the film for most (if not all) of its runtime.
* TitleByNumber: It's the name of the hotel room in question.
* TookALevelInBadass: Takes effect once [[spoiler:the voice on the phone offers Enslin the express checkout and he acts completely nonchalant for the rest of the film, such as relaxing on the couch as the place is set on fire]].
* TrashTheSet: [[spoiler:After Mike seems to have escaped from 1408 and lived a week or so of his normal life, he goes to the post office to deliver a letter, and suddenly all the employees start destroying the place, to reveal 1408 beneath it.]]
* TheUnreveal: In spades. [[spoiler:We never learn what the room is, who sent the postcard, or whether Enslin really escaped.]]
* UpToEleven: Near the end of the film, you think the room has done its worst to Enslin--tricking him into thinking that [[spoiler:he had actually been out of the room for ''weeks'' before bringing him right back]]. Then it does [[DiedInYourArmsTonight that thing with Katie]], and you can't possibly imagine it doing ''anything'' more horrible than that, as Enslin looks like [[DespairEventHorizon a textbook example of a broken man.]] Then it [[spoiler:rewinds to the beginning and tells him he's going to relive the experience over and over and over until he kills himself...]]\\
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[[spoiler:And then the theatrical release has his wife overhearing their daughter's voice on the tape at the end of the movie, begging to be allowed to stay with her parents, before the room reclaims her.]] Remember this was the ending the studio forced so it wouldn't be such a DownerEnding.
* VertigoEffect:
** Used almost identically to the TropeNamer, when Enslin is looking out his window down the street below.
** Used again when he tries crawling through the vents.
* YankTheDogsChain:
** [[spoiler:Enslin is waiting for the clock to count down to zero, thinking then that he'll be safe. Then the clock starts up again at 60 minutes]].
** And [[spoiler:letting him "escape"]]. And [[spoiler:showing him his daughter, then ripping her away again.]]
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