The Bleeding House - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Bleeding House Reviews

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Ryan M
Super Reviewer
December 5, 2011
*1/2 out of ****

Philip Gelatt's "The Bleeding House" has aspirations to be creepy, thrilling, violent, and philosophical all at the same time. The director - who also served as screenwriter - seems to have Michael Hanake's "Funny Games" in mind when it comes to the concept he's dealing with; he wants to display brutalized and violent horror, but with a clear message that could either come off as meaningful or down-right hypocritical. Let's just say that if you didn't like Hanake's film - which obviously served as inspiration for Gelatt's - then you might actually find yourself enjoying "The Bleeding House". You'll end up in the exact opposite situation, however, if you reverse those two so that it turns out that you actually liked "Funny Games". Either way, I think it's pretty obvious which film you should appreciate more over the other.

In short, "The Bleeding House" just doesn't work. A few things here-and-there are decent, sure, but in a whole it's just not all that impressive. I've seen plenty of independent horror movies - some better and others worse than this. Still, I don't think that should act as an excuse for Gelatt's straightforward failure as both a director and a storyteller. He lacks a style - which is typical of first-time filmmakers in the independent field, but nonetheless unacceptable - and he also lacks a purpose. The movie he's made is essential a remake of all the films that influenced it; there's not much more to say as far as its main ideas go, and in a sense, I think the film is aware of this; because it's almost like Gelatt didn't make any attempts whatsoever to say something relatively new.

So we've got this traumatized family - father, mother, daughter (Alexandra Chando), and son - supposedly divided by a tragedy not too far in the past. The incident that left each of their individual lives and their accumulated family in pieces is illustrated early-on only through images of a burning house and talk of murder. Slowly, the film takes us through an afternoon into a night with this troubled family; with a dinner scene that seems to beg for our admiration in terms of its "atmosphere" and "unnerving" nature.

After dinner has been served, eaten, and ruined; the night is finally upon us, but things are about to get even less ordinary. As the son is exiting the home; he sees a peculiar and well-dressed man walking up to the house. This same man greets the father and eventually the mother, introduces himself as Nick (Patrick Breen) and is allowed entrance to the household. He will stay there for the night.

However, he seems to know that the family harbors some deep, dark secrets; and he's about to make their night, to state it as vaguely as possible. If you desire a description of the night to come that is, say, a little more...blunt; then perhaps I should mention the part where Nick starts knocking out the family members one-by-one and hooking them up to blood-absorbing machines that he had hidden inside the little briefcase that he carries in and out of the house.

That's as far as I'll go with the story. If you're interested, you won't want me to spoil the big secrets and revelations that come with the film; some of them may act as mild pleasures. You might even like this film; I know plenty of critics who were - much like me - very critical of the movie, while a few swam against the tides and pronounced their admiration for the feature. I've said it once before, perhaps in a different review for a different film, but I'll say it again; I support independent filmmaking all-the-way, and while I dislike "The Bleeding House" immensely due to the fact that I was simply unable to forgive it of its often massively distracting flaws, I would never tell anyone NOT to see it. Yeah, I don't recommend it in the slightest, but if you want to see it; then see it. Who knows? Your reaction might differ significantly from mine.

I like it when a filmmaker wants to go places where few filmmakers would dare explore for even a minute; but there's successful execution of a good idea, and then there's pretension. "The Bleeding House" really doesn't have a whole lot going for it; it's a slow, unrewarding experience with the aspirations of an art film. I don't think it ends up being one, though. It's just too typical; while it wants ever-so-much to be atypical. There are some high points - including some ominous shots of the house at night and the performance from Breen, which itself has its ups and downs - but they aren't enough to cover up the fact that "The Bleeding House" is a bloodbath undertaking the qualities of what could have been a thought-provoking and interesting horror-thriller. But Gelatt does no more - and no less - than bleed his admittedly ambitious idea completely dry; until it's reduced to a (very) cool poster and a few menacing visual tricks.
Super Reviewer
½ December 9, 2013
The Smith family have a dark past and live pretty much in the middle of nowhere. One night a seemingly wise gentleman from the South(of the USA innit!) says he got lost driving around and request's a room for the night. The smiths reluctantly agree but soon regret that. But what the Smiths visitor didn't expect was the daughter of the family being more of a nutcase than him! The Bleeding House does have some good tension throughout and decent performances to and is something a bit different from your usual horror fare. It kind of works as a low budget You're Next so if you loved that film as much as I did then The Bleeding House is worth checking out!
½ October 18, 2014
Scenario - you live in a house, by design, in the middle of nowhere. Some stranger comes to your door carrying a medical bag saying that his car broke down as he was "driving by" and that he cuts up people for a living. Of course, the family invites him to stay until morning and pays the price. There is nothing good here except for the smashing (and very young) Alexandra Chandro.
August 7, 2012
Boring, far from thrilling, and uneventful. There is no excitement or suspense throughout the entire film. Where is the passion? Stupid and a waste of time.
April 21, 2014
It started off a little weird and slow but also kept me interested the entire time. It picked up the story as the movie progressed and I think that it kept getting better. The ending was predictable but also interesting. I recommend it to any horror fan. I would definitely watch it more than once.
April 21, 2014
Decent effort and there is something about an evil southerner that just strikes a chord with me, but this wants to be deeper and darker than it actually is. By missing its philosophical "nature of evil" mark, its failings can't hide in the shadowy corners
½ September 24, 2013
I liked it...it was predictable in a way...but also strange. Worth a watch! I liked it......I think if you like strangers coming to a house and being creepy...you will like this one.
June 10, 2013
Not really a fan of this movie, it started off ok, and as a fan of Dexter I should have liked it. But unfortunately your hero here is worse than the villain. That being said, I really liked Patrick Breen as nick, he made the movie watchable.
½ October 5, 2012
Regardless of what others are saying about this movie, I enjoyed it. It was subtle horror at its best. Some of the acting was bad yes, especially the girlfriend, but some of it was really good too. Gloria and Nick were good characters. Take some of the cliche things out and it would have been a lot better too. Cops showing up and then not believing the story and going to check things out only to get killed has been played to death.
½ July 26, 2012
As a reviewer below suggests, The Bleeding House bears many similarities to Michael Haneke's Funny Games except that it is never really disturbing or provocative. While it features solid acting and direction, The Bleeding House lacks genuinely creepy or unsettling moments, and ultimately just limps along toward its conclusion without any sense of horrific or philosophical payoff.
½ August 5, 2012
An interesting cult horror movie.
I am legitimately surprised that this movie has such a low rating. It was great to find a movie as dark as this. I would expect the ending of this movie (spoiler alert) to portray the young girl Blackbird as a new person entirely, I expected her to stop with her relentless, pointless killing and find a new direction in life. But I was happy to see that the story took a completely unexpected turn, concluding Blackbird's character as a sadistic killer. But the greatest part of this movie was the killer, with such creative motives and a great delivery of long, interesting speeches. Not a bad movie AT ALL! I'm convinced this will become popular one day as a cult classic. So happy to come across this.
July 19, 2012
An intriguing small budget indie that delivers some great tongue nā(TM) cheek horror and lots and lots of weirdness. I was hesitant going in prejudging this to be just another run the mill cheap slasher flick. But as soon as the ācharming visitorā? arrived on the scene I knew I was either seeing something good, or a very bad experiment movie. Either way, I just had to learn the agenda of this psycho in the white suit who spoke like a character out of a Tennessee Williams play. I also enjoyed the quiet strangeness and strong presence of adorable leading character āBlack Birdā? played by Alexandra Chando. She barley spoke a line, but was absolutely wonderful to watch. āThe Bleedingā? is an amusing slasher project with good special effects, original characters and lots of surprises.
June 16, 2012
2 stars for a cool performance but could have been so much better if it didn't get so off track half way through.
½ May 30, 2012
A little slow but the plot was very original and the scripting and acting was good. Definitely above average
May 14, 2012
Wants to be a cross between the fine TV show "American Horror Story" and the Robert Mitchum classic "Night of the Hunter," "The Bleeding House" fails miserably. But, Patrick Breen's portrayal as a sinister southern surgeon is worthy of comparison with Robert Mitchum's legendary villain. Too bad, this movie's script and other performances lacks in clarity and substance. And, aren't we all tired of movies and TV shows that have cops show up at a crime scene and fail to call for back-up. This movie has that annoying flaw and several others. I would like to credit Hildur GuĆ°nadĆ³ttir's music. It and Breen's performance are worthy of a better movie
January 20, 2012
Daaaaark. It's not perfect, but the engaging creepiness makes The Bleeding House a worthwhile watch.
November 17, 2011
Disappointing, I wanted that second girl to die so badly, she was annoying. I was hopeing this would turn into some psycho love story but it didnt. I love the crazy southern religious traveler angle, I'm reminded of night of the hunter but this in now way compares to the classic. I know they are in the middle of nowhere by why not at least try to make it to town instead of hanging around outside the house? I'm watching the end of the movie now and I'm really still hopeing that girl with the annoying voice will be killed.
May 8, 2011
The Tribeca Film Festival let one sneak in this year. The Bleeding House presents the acting skills of a Middle School play and the screenwriting of something only slightly more advanced. I've seen scarier movies come out of the "$4.99 Bin" at Best Buy.
½ April 23, 2011
A family with a dark secret gets a visit from a preacher who changes their lives forever. Uneven acting and production but still entertaining and interesting.
½ October 18, 2014
Scenario - you live in a house, by design, in the middle of nowhere. Some stranger comes to your door carrying a medical bag saying that his car broke down as he was "driving by" and that he cuts up people for a living. Of course, the family invites him to stay until morning and pays the price. There is nothing good here except for the smashing (and very young) Alexandra Chandro.
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