31 Days Of Horror: “House On Willow Street”

 
Direction
5.0


 
Acting
5.0


 
Plot
3.0


 
Execution
3.0


 
Total Score
4.0


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Posted October 11, 2017 by

 
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I am all for watching any and every horror movie. There are no real rules when it comes to the genre so you’re bound to get, at the very least, something interesting. Even the bad ones offer up laughs and moments of you asking, “What the hell was that?” But then there are the really bad ones. The ones that decided to take themselves seriously when they shouldn’t have and offer zero laughs, and zero entertainment. You’re just left watching a disaster unfold in front of you. The disaster this time around is Alastair Orr’s “House On Willow Street”.

This is not the movie I would have ever chosen to check out unless someone had recommended it to me. The reason I sat through it is because my fiancee excitedly mentioned that it had Sharni Vinson from “You’re Next” — a movie we both loved. So sure. If Sharni is in it, it has to be good…I thought.

Sharni plays Hazel. Along with her boyfriend Ade, his cousin James, and convict Mark, the foursome have a plan to kidnap a rich man’s daughter, Katherine (Carlyn Burchell), and plan to give her back in exchange for diamonds her father is in possession of. Little do they know, Katherine is possessed by a demon that feeds on grief and, as explained by home videos found in Katherine’s house, the demon needs four souls in order to escape Hell and live on earth. Once they get Katherine back to the warehouse (that they’ve rented out?), it becomes immediately apparent that something isn’t right with her and each character begins dealing with things that have haunted them their entire lives.

I’m not even sure where to begin so let’s start with the obvious: Don’t rush your story. The whole movie is laid out within the first fifteen minutes with the characters backstories being shoe-horned into conversation. Also, instead of explaining how and why Katherine got possessed through natural storytelling, they decide to have her just confess it on a home video she shot in her bedroom. This is also the point in the movie where she unearths Hazel’s past as well…because why not kill two birds with one stone?

If you’re going to have “scary demons”, have them kill someone. While they keep saying the demon’s plan is to possess four people and get on with whatever it wants to do, it sure seems like it’s completely fine killing time. It stalks them from the shadows; sometimes revealing itself, other times just standing behind them with it’s mouth agape. When it does finally confront our cast of characters, it seems content to just scare them with a loud scream and then disappear altogether. It also can’t seem to make up its mind if it is restricted to the rules of the earthly body it resides in or if it can indeed use its powers despite being chained to a wall. In order to capture a new soul, it’s long CGI tongue jams itself down its victims throat, but from what I saw, you can easily avoid demonic possession if you just shake your head a lot and, or, close your mouth.

The acting in the film can best be described as “Eh”. When you have actors that aren’t from America doing American accents, their speech is often times slowed down; every syllable stressed. I can’t say they were bad because had they just been allowed to use their natural accents, their lines may have been delivered stronger. As it were, the dialogue feels forced and with a script that’s already admittedly weak, this is not a good combination.

The movie ho-hums its way through it’s own story, leading up to an ending that is the most ridiculous out of all of it and I was left wondering why I had wasted an hour and a half watching it in the first place. There has to be better options out there for you. I just wish they would have at least given me something to laugh about. Instead I was left with nothing more than disappointment.


DavidRyanM

 


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