The House of the Devil

The House of the Devil (2009)

Ti West set out to create an homage of sorts to the horror movies of the 1980s and succeeded with The House of the Devil.  The pacing, story and even smaller details like the film stock and credits all mirror the films of the 80s.  That is the film’s greatest strength: its appeal to horror buffs.  Overall, it’s not a particularly inventive story and drags at times.  The performances are good, but there just doesn’t seem to be enough material.  It takes a good long while to get going, but once the tension sets in, it will get your heart racing.  The ending seemed weak and noncommittal, as if West realized he had two ways to end the film and – unable to decide which way to go with it – split the difference and offered up a watered down compromise.  Overall, the film didn’t live up to the hype but definitely brought back some memories of late night frightfests while offering a few new scares of its own.

Stars: 3/5

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