Paranoia 1.0 Jeff Renfroe and Marteinn Thorsson

Someone is playing a Beckett joke on Simon (Jeremy Sisto). The lonely computer programmer keeps waking up to find packages in his apartment, only to discover they have nothing inside. Nobody knows how they got there, but that's the least of his worries — not only are his neighbours dying mysteriously but he's developed an unnatural attachment to milk and feels somewhat under the weather. And for a while, you humour him in this alienated near-future downer, as its designer grunge sets and sodium lamp lighting are evocative enough to keep you thinking that it might actually go somewhere. Its stylish urban anomie, though not especially original, captures the gnawing dissatisfaction of many a city-dwelling animal to the extent that you don't need explanations. But what starts as The Tenant by way of Seven meeting cyberpunk hits a brick wall when it introduces a tedious thriller plot. What you had hoped would stay creepy and metaphorical becomes literal-minded and dull, taking the promising opening and driving it straight into the ground. Small bits remain (especially Udo Kier in one of his patented mincing weirdo roles) but the flimsy would-be despair soon succumbs to a torrent of clichés. Like a ludicrous M. Night Shyamalan, the filmmakers dash your hopes by revealing their early success to be something more prosaic than it seems — a simpleminded gotcha with nowhere to go but down. Extras include a directors' commentary that's as facile and unserious as their approach to the script, a "making of" featurette that sacrifices information for caffeine-freak editing and shots of the cast and crew mugging, no less than 18 deleted scenes, including three "unofficial trailers" and bios of Sisto, Kier, Deborah Unger and the filmmakers. (Velocity/Th!nk)