The Acid House

Critics Consensus

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Total Count: 20


Audience Score

User Ratings: 7,937
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Movie Info

THE ACID HOUSE is a surreal triptych adapted by "Trainspotting" author Irvine Welsh from his acclaimed collection of short stories. Combining a vicious sense of humor with hard-talking drama, the film reaches into the hearts and minds of the chemical generation, casting a dark and unholy light into the hidden corners of the human psyche.

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Iaian Andrew
as [The Granton Star Cause]
Alison Peebles
as Mother [A Soft Touch]
John Gardner
as Sgt. Morrison [The Granton Star Case]
Alex Howden
as Boab Sr.
Niall Greig Furlton
as [A Soft Touch]
John Gardne
as Sgt. Morrison
William Blair
as Workmate/Deck
Scott Imrie
as Pool Player
Morgan Simpson
as Chantel (as a Baby)
Marnie Kidd
as Chantel (as a Toddler)
Sarah Gudgeon
as New Girl
William "Giggs" McGuigan
as Pub Singer [A Soft Touch]
Doug Eadie
as CoCo's Father
Andrea McKenna
as CoCo's Mother
Billy McElhaney
as Felix the Paramedic
Ricky Callan
as Tam the Driver
Barbara Rafferty
as Dr. Callaghan
Stephen Docherty
as Nurse Boyd
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Critic Reviews for The Acid House

All Critics (20) | Top Critics (3)

Audience Reviews for The Acid House

  • Dec 11, 2012
    The Acid House is a vulgar and perverted literary adaption, of three short stories, in the Scottish slums. It is loaded with profanity, and makes the viewer feel like trash, just by watching. Coming into the viewing I heard nothing of it, but judging it's negative critical reception, and lack of publicity, it's one of the most underrated films I ever encountered. It was hysterical black humor, and probably the best film I've seen from the nineties. The first story follows Boab, a lazy lump of dirt, who looses everything in a matter of a few hours. After a bar man philosophical meeting with God, he is turned into a fly. The meeting was surprisingly deep, and asks the true question of "why don't we use our powers". As a fly he gets revenge, and sees with the audience a scene of incredible disturbance. Then there's the most emotionally dwelling story "The Soft Touch". A truly caring but naive man, marries and impregnates a whore. Obviously enough she openly cheats on him, and everything goes down, for the man with no escape. The setting was tense, and while the ending was anti-climatic, it was the most well made of the shorts. Finally there's the story that the film invests the most effort into, The Acid House. This was absolutely, the best midnight humor I've ever came across. Dirty, crazy, and makes Trainspotting, look like it copped out. A dope head switches bodies with a newly born baby, and while switch of bodies has become a comedy cliche, this one actually made it work. I laughed eccentrically and it really completed the film, if there's any reason to finish it, here you go. In conclusion I can't explain my love for this film enough. The score and white trash setting put a mood. The small things like the graffiti and the bigger aspects such as the characters all had there contribution. I laughed and could still take the next scene with seriousness. The Acid House is not acclaimed nearly enough. I highly recommended to anyone who's willing to vitiate there brain, for two hours. I hoe all will love it as much as myself, though that's unlikely
    Daniel D Super Reviewer
  • Oct 16, 2009
    possibly the most disturbing film i've ever seen. either that or the couple of litres of cider i'd just been swigging combined with the greasy fish n' chips i'd just had was making me feel sick. could've even been the fact that these lunatics were drinking special brew all the time. you know your life is fucked when you're on special brew! another sound dose of wicked, gritty, dark, black, soulless humour from irvine welsh's hand, brought to the screen but the pretty decent director paul mcguigan (gangster num 1 & lucky number slevin)
    Sanity Assassin ! Super Reviewer
  • Jul 09, 2009
    <B><I>THE ACID HOUSE</I> (Scotland, 1998)</B> WRITTEN BY: Irving Welsh, based on his book of short stories by the same title DIRECTED BY: Paul McGuigan FEATURING: Stephen McCole, Maurice Roëves, Garry Sweeney, Jenny McCrindle, Iain Andrew, Irvine Welsh, Kevin McKidd, Gary McCormick, Michelle Gomez, Ewen Bremner, Jemma Redgrave GENRE: <B>FANTASY/DRAMA/HORROR/BLACK COMEDY</B> TAGS: occult, 100% weird! RATING: <B> 5 PINTS OF BLOOD</B> PLOT: <B>A grotesque, genre-bending trio of tawdry, disturbing stories about squalor, decay, excess, perversion, stupidity, and altered states.</B> COMMENTS: The Acid House is funny, grim, unsettling, revolting, and ... well it's a lot of fun if you like this sort of thing! This sort of thing being surreal, underground British Isles films. The Acid House immediately reminded me of Pat McCabe and Neil Jordan's bizarre Irish effort, The Butcher Boy (1987), and the somewhat less eerie, but equally strange, Disco Pigs (2001). Like The Butcher Boy, The Acid House explores the seamy side of, in this case, Scottish rather than Irish workingclass culture. It follows demented characters who pursue debased agendas under circumstances which are at once supernatural and decidedly sleazy Irvine Welsh (Trainspotting) dramatizes three plots from his raunchy book of short stories, The Acid House. Given Welsh's imagination and penchant for depraved characters, decadent circumstances, and just plain rotten motives and outcomes, the result is a creepy movie with totally grotesque content. In the first story, "The Granton Star Cause," Boab (McCole) is a loser who puts as little effort into making love to his girlfriend as he does into his rugby performance. Expelled from the team, dumped by said girlfriend, and kicked out of the house by his parents, Boab seeks solace in the bottom of a pint glass at the local pub. There he meets God, in human form, who informs Boab that he created Man in his own image. God then informs Boab that he (God) is lazy and pathetic, and that since Boab shares these traits, he hates Boab for reminding him of his own worst characteristics. To express his hatred for Boab, as well as his own self-loathing, God dooms Boab by turning him into a common housefly. Now an airborne insect, Boab puts a literal twist to the expression, "a fly on the wall." Spying on his family and friends' sleazy private lives, Boab discovers the depth of their secret perversions, before exacting revenge upon several tormentors. The second story in The Acid House is non-supernatural, but just as disturbing. In "The Soft Touch," the village doofus, Johnny (McKidd), marries the town whore, Catriona (Gomez), with predictable results. Yet Johnny accepts responsibility and attempts to be good father and husband, while his new bride continues doing what she does best. A bad situation worsens when Catriona involves herself with the couple's insane upstairs neighbor Larry (McCormick), who begins systematically to dismantle Johnny's life. Too soft to take decisive action, Johnny becomes a helpless victim until the nutty neighbor turns the tables on Catriona. In the third segment, the film's namesake, "The Acid House," coco, a mindless hooligan on an LSD trip (Bremner) and Jenny (Redgrave), a middleclass pregnant woman giving birth ), are simultaneously struck by lightening. Coco, who is on an LSD trip at the time, switches bodies with the newborn infant. Visiting Coco's adult body in the hospital later, Coco's friends chalk up his new level of infantilism to Coco finally frying his brain with too many drugs. Meanwhile, Coco, as a grotesque infant, delights in breastfeeding and not so subtly manipulating his new "mother" into indulging his atavistic desires. The Acid House is outrageous, over the top, and offensive. The Acid House will never be accused of being too clever or subtle. In fact, from a literary standpoint, Welsh's treatment of his subject matter is akin to administering a CPR heart massage with a sledge hammer ... and vomiting in the patient's mouth while administering artificial respiration. Despite the supernatural premise of two of the three stories, the horror in The Acid House is not the traditional ghosts and goblins type. Rather, it stems from a deep dread of entrapment, from awful bodily metamorphosis, and from an exploration of the abysmal depths of the debased human condition. Overall, I'm going to give The Acid House just an average rating of five pints of blood, but don't be misled. The Acid House is a must-view for all fans of campy, disgusting occult.
    Pamela D Super Reviewer
  • Sep 17, 2008
    Three short stories make up the length of a movie... some are better than others so I have averaged it out. Definately an Irvine Welsh story LOL
    Nikki M Super Reviewer

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