The House of the Devil - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The House of the Devil Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ December 2, 2016
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 spends a good time in the anticipation (maybe too long) to let apprehension and tension slowly settle in.
½ November 27, 2016
Somewhere between a 2.5 and 3
½ November 2, 2016
This horror movie proves that some slow-burn horror is not as effective as it ambitiously tend to be. Ti West should've made this as a short fast-phase film rather than elongating it as it seems like the character almost sales talk the audiences about the damn house. On the other hand, the film successfully delivered its aim - with sophisticating use of gore and intense fright fest - after all that unexciting built-up of anticipation. After all being said, YES, it's worth the watch but not as much as it is worth the wait.
October 31, 2016
I'm watching this right now. Without hyperbole, I can tell you that I'm at 1:00:56 (out of a 1:35:12 movie) and I've watched a young woman flit about with zero sense of direction. That's it. There's been one semi-shocking scene so far and it hasn't yet related to the plot of the film. On top of the fact that the film quality appears to be purposefully bad (to recreate the 80s feel, it seems) this movie is just dull dull dull.
October 30, 2016
These days is quite difficult to get a legitimately scary horror film/critically acclaimed, so every time one gets a considerable amount of acclaim, it peaks my interest, thus is the case of the well received "The House of the Devil".

Set in the 80s, we follow a young sophomore named Samantha who recently bought a new apartment. Needing money for the first deposit, she accepts a babysitting job located in the middle of nowhere but little does she know that night will change her life.

Out of all the horror subgenres, demons/possession films are the ones I try to avoid due to its limited creative possibilities and the fact that the recent additions have been more than lackluster for my taste ("Devil's Due", "The Devil Inside", "The Exorcism of Emily Rose", "Dominion/Exorcist the Beginning", "Ouija", etc), but I do love "The Exorcist", "Rosemary's Baby" and "The Omen", so when people described this film as a fantastic homage to those films I decided to give it a chance (plus you have Tom Noonan in here) and I have to say I was extremely disappointed. "Th House of the Devil" is a extremely peculiar horror film, as it has good ideas and a more than confident director in charge (it reminds me of "You're Next" which shared cast members and had a cameo by this film's director, Ti West) but it is all limited/destroyed by the script. The film is made as an homage to those cult/possession films from the late 60s to the mid 70s but at the same time it tries to merge the old fashioned haunted house thus taking away all the tension. Being limited to a cliched location, you don't have anything to be afraid of, this isn't "Rosemary's Baby" where you don't know what/who to trust or "The Omen" where you don't know what is going to happen next, this is just a chick walking around a house (or even dancing) and therefore throwing every horror cliché possible. I know the point of the film is the buildup and it's payoff but the buildup is poorly executed (West tried and failed to follow the steps of Hitchcock) and the payoff is short, cliched and even campy.

"The House of the Devil" is a stylish and well made homage of the late 60s to mid 70s possession films, but it lacks an identity. Due to major pacing issues, predictable/barely basic screenplay and its location limitations, this film drags and will possibly bore you if you are well versed on the horror genre. A confidently made film that is ultimately generic and forgettable.
½ October 15, 2016
How many times have you heard people praise movies or TV shows just based on it's 80's theme and it's nostalgic references. It's happening all the time now.

"Stranger Things" (TV show)
"200 Cigarettes"
"Wet Hot American Summer"

The list goes on, but I don't want to be here all day. Yeah, it's cool seeing this film or music from the 80's there as the scene plays out. But why do I have this feeling that it's only there because the creator or director wants it there just because he likes that movie or song. The same goes with the setting and the feel that I think is missing in these homages. It just doesn't feel like it's the 80's, even if you throw in the endless references and throw backs.

But then you get a film like "The House of the Devil" that went out of it's way to look and feel like one. It's seriously impressive of the amount of effort and detail that Ti West puts in this. It's the reason why I think "The House of the Devil" stands out from the rest in terms of what it's going for that others try to do. It's more than a homage, it's the real thing.

Now Ti West can be a hit or miss for me. I either like or dislike he's movies. I do respect the guy for doing different projects and tackling themes in movie. I mean, sure, it's nothing new for directors tackling different themes, but for some reason I always keep an eye out for what Ti West dose next. And in "House of the Devil" Ti West brings a very slow burn movie that uses it's homages fittingly in it's film making. He demands you to be patient for what the movie is building up to and doesn't shy away from doing so. It was filmed with 16mm film, giving it a retro stylistic look that matched the decade, which actually did match the decade quite well. Now this what I like to see from Ti West and I can take this as a heavy reminder why this guy is a talented film maker even at a young age.

But what stops "House of the Devil" from being a great movie for me is it's pasting issues. And I know the movie is building up to it's creepy climax as I said before, but it dose take awhile to get there. I found myself kinda bored with some scenes that seem to drag on a bit. I guess you got to have good patience, which I'm 50/50 on me.

While I praise the film for getting the 80's look and feel right visually, but not quite on the audio or sound. Have you ever noticed in 80's movies where the sound of objects, doors and guns firing sound like 80's audio. How awesome would it be if that was included here. This may be a small complaint, but hey, every little detail can make a big difference.

Overall rating: "The House of the Devil" may not be everyone's type of film, just judging by the mix feedback from other people. But for my experience, I enjoyed what I've seen, even if it feels short.
½ October 2, 2016
31 Days of Horror 2016 #1
½ September 3, 2016
Absolutely dreadful...abysmal trash.
August 26, 2016
well ive seen this movie before kinda film..... I saw it in the 80's the name seem like the same how can.... people in the film industry keep sending the same film is it for a buck the only difference about the film is the date the film came out.....
John Ross D.
Super Reviewer
½ August 21, 2016
Frankly speaking, the film lacks the entertainment when it comes to showing anticipation hence almost the running time of this film is about Samantha [the main character] roaming around places to places, that at times comes out as very irrelevant to ever be seen in the first place, turning the film very unexciting. Yet, the movie gives such a praise for its astonishing graphics and cinematography. Delivers an effective scares and dread. The climax is gripping and is the main point of all that long anticipation. Though director Ti West could've made it as short film instead, that could've made it even more better than to prolong the sense of anticipation that turns out quite unappealing. In spite of that, this movie is almost crafted perfectly, and horror junkies could find this classic-inspired throwback a worthy to see.
August 14, 2016
Really effective little retro horror flick.
August 3, 2016
Great piece of art that takes you back to the VHS days!
½ July 31, 2016
One of those films where everything that happens does so in the last twenty minutes, with such a slow beginning and then everything just going mad. Shot in a grainy "whats the point" style that's meant to be arty and retro but actually is just annoying.
July 31, 2016
It may not always succeed in keeping your attention while chronically the mundane tasks of its heroin during a very slow buildup. But the last ten minutes hits you like a freight train. Solid genre filmmaking.
½ July 19, 2016
This movie deserves at least 3 stars just because it gives you such a sense of dread unlike any other movie I've seen recently. If it packed more scares I would have given it a better rating but to be honest, this movie doesn't deliver anything scary until the last 20 minutes. What's scary about this movie is the anticipation and build up. The very last scene could have been better and I felt they could have done more but overall I'd definitely recommend this movie
½ July 18, 2016
Nothing original, nothing scary, nothing worth your time.
½ July 4, 2016
1 1/2 hours of nothing happening. The scariest part was when a girl is offered a lighter half way through the film. After that nothing...
June 6, 2016
Lovingly made homage to the slow-burn horror films of the 1980s. Equal parts captivating, mysterious, hokey and glacial. What it loses in its bloody and somewhat silly denouement, is notable but not deadly.
May 26, 2016
As someone whose teen years were in the 80's, I especially enjoyed seeing the throwback logos, walkman, and other prop/set items that really put you in that time. While the story is a bit slow by today's standards, it truly has the feel of an older, suspenseful horror movie. If you are finding the plot to slow to build I highly encourage you to stick it out. The ending of this movie is absolutely worth the wait!
½ May 13, 2016
If you like Ti West you know he likes the slow burn to lull you into the shocks that pop up, and he is one of the best at creepy scenes. This is definitely creepy but just moved a little too slow with too much a weak ending.
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