Review: Locked into a simulated space mission for a limit-testing ‘400 Days’

Brandon Routh plays Theo and Caity Lotz, as Emily in the movie "400 Days." Courtesy of Syfy Films

Brandon Routh plays Theo and Caity Lotz, as Emily in the movie “400 Days.” Courtesy of Syfy Films

(Syfy Films / Syfy Films)

Despite the intriguing “Twilight Zone"/"Outer Limits” premise — a quartet of would-be astronauts are subjected to a psychologically daunting simulated interstellar journey — the sci-fi drama “400 Days” ultimately disintegrates upon impact because of a lazy payoff.

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Confined to an underground mock-up spacecraft buried beneath an empty field, the isolated three men (Brandon Routh, Dane Cook and Ben Feldman) and one woman (Caity Lotz) serve as guinea pigs for a government experiment gauging the long-term effects of deep-space travel.

Unsurprisingly, pent-up tensions and creeping paranoia proceed to take their mental toll well before Day 400. Or do they?


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After evocatively setting the stage with a montage of some bizarro archival test footage from the early days of the space program, director-writer Matt Osterman’s feature for cable television network Syfy’s new theatrical division tosses out a lot of potential what-ifs but never commits to any of them.

Osterman cops out with an opaque ending that will likely vex viewers who have already had to endure a bunch of uninhabitable characters who prove as remote and lifeless as their faux interplanetary mission.

Lacking a viable exit strategy, the tension-free “400 Days” feels like wasted time.

“400 Days”

No MPAA rating

Running time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Playing: Arena Cinema, Hollywood. Also on VOD.