The Last House on the Left Reviews
This is an all together gruesome affair, but the film hits the audience with more than just a visceral punch to the gut. It hits hard emotionally and mentally as well. You could write an academic essay arguing how morality plays into the film, and could easily provide an argument defending what Mari's parents do as justifiable, even though what they do is almost as bad as what Krug and Co. do. The fact that the audience can identify with the girls and feel sorry for them is what makes this an unforgettable and terrifying film.
It's low budget and the time period that it was made are easily seen, but those are forgiveable if everything else works, but also can help a film at times, giving it a more raw and messy feel that only adds to the atmosphere. As horrifying as the film can be, something does stick out.The music is rather contrasting, leading to a very mixed film tonally. Use of contrasting music doesn't always pan out successfully, and I wonder why the film couldn't just pick a tone and stick with it. That's pretty much my only real issue though.
If you can find this one, give it a shot. It's by no means perfect, but is certainly a great work nonetheless.
"Mari, 17, is dying. Even for her, the worst is yet to come."
I've seen Wes Craven's The Last House on the Left, three times now. Despite, its classification as a classic of the horror genre, I really don't care for it. Forty years after its release, this just doesn't have the same effect on people that it did when it came out. Upon release, it was a controversial shocker. Now, it is just a badly acted exploitation film that has dated horribly and features some of the most godawful music I have ever heard in a movie. Nothing really fits together. Craven is making a sadistic shocker, but misses out on some key elements he needed. The tone is all wrong for a film like this and everything is overblown to the point of ridiculousness. Such as Krug's crime that originally landed him in prison. He had killed a priest and two nuns, and now he has his son hooked on heroin so he can control him. Craven wants to make us fear these characters, but all we can do is laugh at them because they are so terribly written.
This isn't the horror classic some describe it as. It's early Wes Craven and it has the same look and feeling of his The Hills Have Eyes movies. Neither of which do I like either. I like the remake of The Last House on the Left and The Hills Have Eyes much, much more than Craven's original. This is do mainly to the fact that they make things more serious and achieve a much heavier and more terrifying tone. Carven's initial thought with The Last House on the Left had a lot of potential. It all just went downhill with all the lousy dialogue and characters.
Sadistic movies have definitely came worse than this one, though. It isn't the worst movie of its kind that you could watch, but the classic status it has received is annoying and unwarranted. All it is, is a movie that pissed a lot of people off in 1972, that looks like a cheap and poorly made exploitation film. There's hundreds of those and they don't get this classic status. You may feel you need to watch this one, especially if you are a horror fan, but there is really no need.
So what is Last House On The Left? Is it an early work of genius from Wes Craven? A masterpiece that showed a man that was well on his way to create films like The Hills Have Eyes and Nightmare On Elm Street? Is this effect doubled because it was produced by Sean "Friday The 13th" Cunningham? This is why the legend of this movie has grown as much as it has- because of the folks involved in it. This film is no different than the hundreds of other drive-in exploitation films that were being pumped out of various producers garages in the early 1970's. It's no better and no worse. A bad script, bad acting, a lack of money, and an inexperienced director makes this film almost laughable if it wasn't for the violence on the screen. That's the key to a film like this and I Spit On Your Grave. A quote comes to mind when thinking about these two films. One comes from Roger Ebert's original review of Spit in which he discusses a fellow patron at the theater he was watching the film at saying "that was a good one" at the end of one of the numerous rapes scenes in that film. There's an audiences for stuff like this. It's like porn. Screw the plot, as long as it has that stuff and an unsatisfying conclusion.
Just look at this like a rough draft for some of the films that Wes Craven would make later. It's his first one so we can't be to hard on the guy. it was the genre in 1972. But a classic of horror cinema? If that's the case then you can call a used piece of toilet paper a classic too.
first the story starts of with to girls who fall into the hands of 3 criminals wanted for murder then when they are finished with the girls they stay at the house on the left where they meet there match!!!
Really unsuppenseful and boring!
The film is the tale of a pair of teenage girls on their way to a rock concert for one's seventeenth birthday. Things go utterly awry when they attempt to score marijuana on the way to the show from a young man who turns out to be a member of a gang of psychotic convicts.
The realism of this film is what makes it horrific, and a reminder of what is so possible in our world.
I must applaud Craven for his work because it's unlike anything I've seen in the genre. You can see the ground this film laid for slasher films yet to come even though this film lies in a genre of it's own.
Further proof that the 70s were a wonderful time for horror films, although this is less of a horror film and more of a series of unfortunate and fucked up events involving two teenage girls and a group of escaped psychotic killer convicts.
Wes Craven's first feature film is one that is designed to make you feel uncomfortable. It features nasty characters doing horrible things to innocent people. The acting and dialog of some of the characters is somewhat hokey early on, but its low budget and gritty approach makes it both forgivable and still disturbing.
The twist in the third act further turns the story on its head and certainly brings the movie into its appropriate cult classic horror status.
Cheap, engaging, and disturbing.
Krug Stillo: Listen to daddy. I want you to take the gun, and I want you to put it in your mouth, and I want you to turn around and blow your brains out. Blow your brains out, BLOW YOUR BRAINS OUT!
This movie is very badly dateted now and might put off a lot of horror/movie fans but if so still worth checking out for Wes Craven first movie.