Tuesday, October 09, 2012

The Silent House

(2011) **1/2 Twenty-something Sarah (Elizabeth Olsen, yep that Olsen) meets up with her father and uncle to help clean up a summer home that she has not visited since she was a child. Their goal is to make the house presentable in order to sell it. The messy house is boarded up, the doors are dead-bolted, and with no electricity or working phones the trio prepare for an uncomfortable night. Shortly after falling asleep, Sarah is awoken by strange noises coming from upstairs. After waking her father up the two begin to investigate and soon realize that they are in grave danger. After her father and uncle seem to disappear we follow Sarah as she makes her way around the claustrophobic dwelling ultimately discovering the unspoken secrets of the house.
The Silent House is a remake of the Spanish film ‘La Casa Muda’ (2010). Where the original created chills through subtly, as Sarah slowly discovers the secrets of the house, the American remake, not surprisingly, spells everything out fairly quickly with “scares” that are telegraphed well in advance. It is possible that because I watched the original first that some of the film’s potency was diluted for me (i.e. I pretty much knew what was going to happen), yet La Casa Muda remains a much stronger vehicle with a better cast and a mystery that is revealed in a much more subtle manner. Skip the remake and watch the original.

8 comments:

Catfreeek said...

In most cases the original is a safer bet. What the hell is wrong with our country? Can't we come up with our own original ideas? Jeesh

Johnny Sweatpants said...

Well, well, well.. Look who decides to join the party? You have some catching up to do mister!

I like the side by side comparisons. It's no surprise that the remake fell flat. Sometimes I can't help but wonder how any good US films get made.

DCD said...

Whoot! JPX is in da hooooouuuzzzz!

Reading both of these reviews, I don't think I'd bother with the American version if I was going for this movie.

Octopunk said...

OO! OO! OO! JPX is back from vacaaation!

Welcome.

Wow, first Doris Day now one of the Olson twins, that's a lot of unlikely appearances for one day.

DCD said...

It's actually the younger sister of the Olsen twins, just in case anyone cares!

Trevor said...

If nothing else, American remakes always clue me in to the superior original. I never would've watched Rec if I hadn't seen Quarantine. I never would've seen Ringu if I hadn't seen The Ring.

Trevor said...

Also, with this movie, and i'm sorry if this sounds like a spoiler, but within the first ten minutes of this movie, you see the father quickly hiding polaroids so his daughter can't see them, and the uncle say the words, "You've really grown up to be quite a woman", to his niece in a sultry tone.
Gosh, I wonder what the big reveal at the end will be?!?

Landshark said...

Ah, I thought "Elizabeth" Olsen didn't quite sound right. Younger sister...I get it.

Sounds sucky.