‘The Rental’: Dave Franco’s Horror Guide of What Not to Do at Your Next Airbnb Stay
Our parents used to tell us to never accept rides from strangers. And now we do because pushing buttons is fun. Like Uber and Lyft, the hilariously unsafe Airbnb has caught on like hotcakes. Its marketplace connects strangers who want to rent their homes out to other strangers looking for accommodations in that area.
Dave Franco’s directorial debut, The Rental, leans into the precariousness of these circumstances…and it’s horrifying. His film follows two couples on a seemingly perfect getaway. However, as the story plays out, things become more and more sinister. While neither the host nor the renters are entirely to blame for the subsequent travesty, both parties could’ve done more to prevent bloodshed. So, for those of you whose lives are getting more ominous by the day, here’s Dave Franco’s horror guide of what not to do at your next Airbnb stay.
Cover Photo: IFC Films
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Don't ignore signs of discrimination.
Let’s say one of your friends submits an application to rent and ocean view house and gets denied. Then you submit an application and immediately get accepted (you’re a white male while she is not). While background checks should be important, don’t rent from racist assholes. Bad vibes off the bat.
Don't rent a place in the middle of nowhere.
Also, it might be nice if help is only a few minutes away (if needed). People need to be able to hear your screams.
Don't make assumptions about the host/landlord.
OK, so he may be a racist. And then he appears as if from nowhere with both hands in his back pockets as if they are glued in there. He lacks social skills to boot. That doesn’t necessarily mean he’s going to kill you. If you are committed to staying here, communication is key. If you have a question, ask. Make it clear what you are comfortable with, don’t accept a landlord who comes and goes as they please—he can leave that telescope on the front porch.
Don't go on vacation with anyone who may have sexual feelings for your significant other (especially not a family member or coworker).
If you think, even for a second, that your brother wants to hook up with your girlfriend, don’t go on vacation with him and your girl. If you’re the brother/girlfriend, how about you don’t cheat? Don’t keep secrets. It’s hard enough to survive in a horror situation let alone when you and your cohorts aren’t honest with each other. The next thing you know, you’re hanging out in a kill box because you’re afraid of getting caught cheating. Soldiers can’t fight together when they’re at odds with one another.
Don't take a shower (or bang) before checking the place for cameras and/or microphones.
Because a masked man will definitely use that footage against you (among other things).
Don't turn the house into a party pad (follow the house rules).
If you trash the house, the host can void your damage deposit and even sue you. Also, it’s harder to keep track of things when you’re buzzed up. For example, if you insist on breaking the rules and bringing your dog on the premises, make sure you always know where he/she is. A creeper could take the dog just to discombobulate your group. Side note: Always share drugs.
Don't let an angry Lip from 'Shameless' beat the host to a pulp.
Or anyone for that matter. Do not punch your landlord; whether that person is running an Airbnb or an apartment complex. And if someone unexpectedly and inexplicably dies, don’t dispose of the body. Call the frickin' cops.
Don't ever hesitate to call the cops.
You found cameras, the host is creepy, and then said host got suffocated to death by a masked man (although you didn’t see that). Forget about the incendiary sex tape. Call the cops the second something nefarious happens. Things tend to escalate quickly.
Don't go off alone.
Have you never seen a slasher film?
Don't forget to clean up after yourself...or do.
Respect other people’s property. They allowed you to stay in their beautiful home, so leave it how you found it...aside from the cameras and bugs you hid throughout the house. Once the next set of renters shows up and you manipulate, torture, and murder them, feel free to leave that Airbnb in disarray before wandering off into the night. On to the next.
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