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House of the Witchdoctor

USA 2013
produced by
Mark Vadik, Larry Skorniak, Chazz DeMoss (executive), Karl R. Kopp (executive), Wade Hagenbart (executive), Mark Mikolas (executive), Judith Capurso (executive), Clay Mallow (executive), Jim Capurso (executive) for Lost Key Films, Aardwolf Entertainment
directed by Devon Mikolas
starring Bill Moseley, Leslie Easterbrook, Allan Kayser, Callie Stephens, David Willis, Emily Bennett, Summer Bills, Jonathan Helvey, Danny Miller, Dyanne Thorne, Howard Maurer, David Andreiw, Gegory Geffard, Steffie Grote, Susan Monts-Bologna, Nick Bastounes, Kelly Owens, Joe Galati
written by Devon Mikolas, music by Christopher Farrell, special effects by Troy Holbrook, second unit direction and makeup by Cat Bernier, production design by Tina Krause

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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To the day one year ago, Leslie's (Callie Stephens) boyfriend (Nick Bastounes) has been killed by a bunch of unknown psychos - so to not be alone on that day, Leslie has invited a few friends (Emily Bennett, Summer Bills, Jonathan Helvey, Danny Miller) over to her parents' (Bill Moseley, Leslie Easterbrook) house (the parents are out that night) just so she doesn't have to be alone with her memories. It's mostly a sob-fest though, until two violent and totally ruthless home invaders (Allan Kayser, David Willis) violently enter the premises, kill the guys and rape the girls - only Leslie somehow seems to be able to evade them and everytime they are about to capture her she puts up a good fight. Finally, the baddies think they have cornered her in her father's sanctuary, the basement ... but hard-boiled as they may be, they can't help but feeling there's something odd about the place, and when Leslie's parents return with a few masked associates ... well, without giving too much away, I have to say the film isn't called House of the Witchdoctor for nothing ...

 

House of the Witchdoctor is a fun little movie because it really knows how to play with horror clichées and thus with audience expectations, as it starts out like your typical home invasion/torture porn movie - and a well-made one at that, with all the suspense, shocks and gruesome scenes in all the right places -, but once you've gotten the feeling you've seen it all before, it turns into something entirely different, without betraying it's narrative, just breaking with the formula. But as a whole, the film is really well-made and well-played, and all the violence is well-placed and explicit enough without being just gratuitous, so for any genre fan able to think a little outside of formulas, this is one to really enjoy!

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
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love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

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Tales to Chill
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
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Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
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Out now from
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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