Tuesday, October 02, 2012

The House of the Devil

(2009) ****

As almost everyone on the blog has reviewed this movie over the past few years, I will not get into too many plot details.  Samantha needs cash for a new apartment, she gets a babysitting job that turns out to be more then she bargained for!

Loved this flick.  The build-up of tension was excellent.  It is really a contrast to those horror movies that feel they have to throw in cheap "scares" to jolt their audience.  Samantha's time in the house shows how most of us would act in a new place in the babysitter role - check everything out, wander around, etc.  But because we know there must be something freaky about this place, beyond the isolation and creepy owners - the "normal-ness" of her behavior leaves you feeling even more suspense. 

I was also impressed with the use of silence in the film.  Again, unlike so many movies of today that pound the soundtrack in so you know something scary is coming The House of the Devil utilizes silence and a sparse piano score to extremely effective technique.  The scene where Sam is dancing around to her walkman with The Fixx blaring ratcheted up the tension even more for me because it was so loud compared to the rest of the sounds of the film.

Loved the retro feel that has been given praise by all the other Thonners.  The director got that amazingly right.  I've been wanting to watch this one for awhile after reading all the reviews, I am so glad I chose it to start my Horrorthon this year!


11 comments:

Catfreeek said...

Great film to kick off with. This was done so well, you might also want to check out Babysitter Wanted, it starts so similarly I thought it was the same film for a minute, but it takes a different turn and is also pretty good.

DCD said...

Cool! I noticed the director of House also did Innkeepers, which sounded solid from your review, Cat.

JPX said...

Nice review, SCD, I'm so glad you dug this movie!

Octopunk said...

Yes! Excellent kickoff choice. Nice point about the silence and the soundtrack. Can't recall exactly but I reckon that was another "out of the past" element.

Octopunk said...

Anyone else notice how JPX's garbled iPhone comments are the new black this year? Who's this SCD person? And he thinks Southern Gothic was reviewed by someone named "Shak."

JPX said...

Shuttle up!

Landshark said...

Hey, I reviewed this last year, but it's not showing on the Monster List! Either is my Night of the Hunter review from my first year...

I'm beginning to worry that JSP is slowly deleting my very existence like some sort of sci-fi movie where, you know, a guy has his existence erased.

Johnny Sweatpants said...

Landshark - I am most certainly not trying to erase your existence! However I just searched through all of the posts from October-November 2011 and I could not locate your review. If you can find the link I will happily add it to the monster list!

IMO this movie is the quintessential Horrorthon flick, maybe even more so than Trick 'r Treat. Now I feel the overwhelming need to review it!

50PageMcGee said...

agreed, all around. this is maybe the best bang-for-the-buck of any modern movie reviewed by more than two of us.

Abduscias said...

I loved this movie. After watching it more than 10 times, I noticed in the credits, her favorite teacher was played by the director himself....must be a joke. There are no teachers in this movie. :)

AC said...

really love this one too.