Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Movie Review: THE OPEN HOUSE (2018)

The Open House

The Open House is an original Netflix Horror / Thriller movie that came out in January 2018. I saw the trailer and it looked really creepy, so I thought I'd give it a watch.

The movie is about a mother and her son who are struggling financially since the death of her partner. She agrees to move into her sister's house, which happens to be on sale, with the arrangement that they leave the property during the day for potential buyers to come in and view it. Naturally, weird shit starts to happen like things going missing, switching on and off, and the elderly neighbour saying strange things. The son becomes convinced that someone or something is lurking in the house.

Firstly, the cinematography is amazing, and the movie is visually stunning throughout. The actors are excellent, making the viewer feel like they are with them in the situation, bringing the story to life.

(Spoilers from here:)
The Open House keeps you guessing. Initially, I wasn't sure if it was going to be a ghost story, or at least have some supernatural element, or be a home invasion movie like The Strangers. I was drawn towards the former for the majority of the film, especially with the red herrings of seeing someone in the house that the occupants don't notice or even hear at the time. Another way the writers trick the viewer is with the character of the lady who lives next door, who becomes increasingly creepier throughout the film. One minute she's telling everyone that her husband has died, and the next, she says he's at home, alive and well. Towards the end it's revealed that she has dementia, and has nothing to do with what's going on in the property. At one point, I was considering that the house may be going back in time or some huge twist like that, but no. There's no small-town, pagan village conspiracy like in The Wicker Man either, and the shop owner turns out to simply be a shop owner.

So, with all of these possibilities running through my head, and me trying to work out what's going on Sherlock Holmes style, it turns out that it's just some creepy, murderous dude who is hiding in the property. The final scene shows him arriving at another open house, suggesting that he targets open houses. He obviously enjoys making his life difficult!

I really enjoyed The Open House for the most part, but the ending didn't provide the pay-offs I was hoping for, and I felt a little short-changed. Oh, is that it? He just kills them, which he could have done ages ago, then fucks off? Seriously.

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