The House of the Devil (2009)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: Though its underlying themes are familiar, House of the Devil effectively sheds the loud and gory cliches of contemporary horror to deliver a tense, slowly building throwback to the fright flicks of decades past.

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Movie Info

Sam is a pretty college sophomore, so desperate to earn some cash for a deposit on an apartment that she accepts a babysitting job even after she finds out there is no baby. Mr. and Mrs. Ulman are the older couple who lure Sam out to their creeky Victorian mansion deep in the woods, just in time for a total lunar eclipse. Megan is Sam's best friend, who gives her a ride out to the house, and reluctantly leaves her there despite suspecting that something is amiss. Victor at first seems like just a creepy guy lurking around the house, but quickly makes it clear that Sam will end this night in a bloody fight for her life.
Rating:
R (for some bloody violence)
Genre:
Horror
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 wide
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:

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Cast

Mary Woronov
as Mrs. Ulman
Mary B. McCann
as Woman Anchor
John Speredakos
as News Anchor
Tom Noonan
as Mr. Ulman
AJ Bowen
as Victor
Heather Robb
as Heather
Danielle Noe
as Mother
Dee Wallace
as Landlady
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Critic Reviews for The House of the Devil

All Critics (94) | Top Critics (21)

The film's nostalgic design is subtle enough not to dampen the seriously sinister atmospherics.

Full Review… | March 19, 2010
Time Out
Top Critic

In keeping with his models, West is concerned with not suspense exactly but the ritual withholding and ultimate lavishing of bloody chaos.

Full Review… | December 17, 2009
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

West, a rising young director of minor cult pleasures, comes clean here about his love for all things Bava (Mario) and Carpenter (John).

Full Review… | December 3, 2009
Boston Globe
Top Critic

There's a payoff in The House of the Devil, if you have the patience. Some of the scenes seem draggy, but the characters are complex, and their motivations are explained.

Full Review… | November 19, 2009
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Even the familiar tropes of The House of the Devil are familiar in the right way, like an old, bloodstained sweater.

November 11, 2009
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

The film may provide an introduction for some audience members to the Hitchcockian definition of suspense: It's the anticipation, not the happening, that's the fun.

Full Review… | November 11, 2009
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The House of the Devil

½

Ti West obviously knows the genre inside out, as he emulates the style and feel of those horror movies of the 80s with admirable skill (including the zooms) and takes a good time in the anticipation (maybe too long) to let apprehension and tension slowly settle in.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

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Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

½

Oh I absolutely loved this movie. It's a brilliant throwback to the old days of horror where the most terrifying thing was what wasn't on screen, rather than what is on screen and splattered all over the place. It was made in 2009, but looks so genuinely authentic for when it takes place you would swear they shot it in the 70's. Even the titles and music match. I don't want to give anything away, but this film has many surprises in store and if you are a lover of horror films you have to watch it.

Josh Lewis
Josh Lewis

Super Reviewer

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