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House of Good and Evil

USA 2013
produced by
Blu de Golyer, Christian Oliver, Mark Rickard, Sue Whalen de Golyer (executive), David Larsen (executive) for Horrorshow, Inc, Shooting Creek Films
directed by David Mun
starring Rachel Marie Lewis, Christian Oliver, Marietta Marich, Jordan Rhodes, Rob Neukirch, Bo Keister, Blu de Golyer
written by Blu de Golyer, music by Austin Creek

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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When they were living in the city, the Conleys had marital problems, mainly because Chris Conley (Christian Oliver) took to alcohol quite a bit more than he should have, and then he would beat his wife Maggie (Rachel Marie Lewis) - and one such incident of domestic violence caused 8 months pregnant Maggie to lose her unborn child ...

Now everything's supposed to be getting better though: The loss of the unborn seems to have been a wakeup-call for Chris and he persuades Maggie to give it another try, in a totally different enviroment - a big house in the middle of the woods, miles and miles away from the next city, their only company being the retired couple next door - who keep to themselves mostly.

However, the intended trip to paradise is over pretty soon when Chris starts drinking the very first night in the house (he doesn't turn violent though), when he has to leave Maggie alone for days on time, claiming he's called to wildfire after wildfire (he's a firefighter), and when he eventually resorts to hitting Maggie again - though only once and in sort of self defense, but harder than he ought to. At least he realizes it was a mistake right away I suppose ...

When Chris is away, Maggie is driven half crazy by the neighbours' ringing telephone even though there isn't supposed to be a phoneline to the house, by her own inability to reach Chris when he's out (no cellphone reception either), by constant reminders of the child she lost, and by loneliness as such, which eventually develops into paranoia. Eventually, Maggie even goes so far as to break into her neighbours' house, only to meet Mrs Anderson (Marietta Marich) waiting for her with a cup of tea and craving for a little bit of diversion. Turns out that Mrs Anderson is a sweet old lady whom Maggie soon sees as a future version of herself. It later turns out her husband (Jordan Rhodes) is a firefighter, just like Chris, and he, too, tends to a little bit of domestic violence when he's drunk. Furthermore, Mrs Anderson confides in Maggie that her husband plots to kill her ...

With such a combination, things can only end badly ...

 

House of Good and Evil is an extremely likeable horror film that's old fashioned in the best of ways: In a word, it's just creepy - it doesn't try to impress with too-elegant-to-be-true camera pans, flashy editing, over-the-top CGI effects or by taking us to the slaughterhouse, instead it puts its emphasis in creating an atmosphere of unease in the most subtle of ways, through noises, dramaturgical hints, and of course also the performance by Rachel Marie Lewis, which the whole movie revolves around of course. And add to this a well-structured screenplay (which might not always make 100% sense ... but for a reason) with a kickass unexpected ending, and you've got yourself a pretty good, pretty spooky little film.

Recommended!

 

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD