Before the Oscars, They Belonged to Us, Part 3 - Dread Central
Connect with us

Before the Oscars, They Belonged to Us, Part 3

Published

on

Disclaimer: This article may contain sarcasm; irony and “LOLs” proceed with caution.

The Final Chapter (“>read Part 2 here)! We have Howard the Duck, Freejack and Shyamalan flicks on the list; these are never good signs. Nonetheless we are bringing it all to you in full-color and in 3-D. (Ed. Note: Due to the economy, 3-D has been dropped and will be replaced by Smell-o-vision — check for your scratch and sniff cards in about 4-6 weeks.) Best Sound went to rage-zombie veterans Ian Tapp and Richard Pryke, leaving Mark Weingarten who worked on Rejuvenatrix in the dust. The Sound Editing section contains one too many references to Ron Silver, and at least two references to a Roger Corman film.

The visual effects category pulled on our heartstrings this year due to the loss of Stan Winston, who was noted en memoriam along with other heroes, Vampira, Leonard Rosenman and Charles H. Schneer just to name a few. The Technical Awards were totally lacking from the live awards ceremony. I did include some genre notes on these tech-titans and a link to all the winners. I hope you enjoyed the ride as much I did; if you don’t mind I’ll just hitchhike my way home. If you do care to join me for dinner, I live right next to the old slaughterhouse.

There’s roadkill all over Texas. Now let’s get on with it.


Best Achievement in Sound:

  • Ian Tapp for Slumdog Millionaire (Winner):
    28 Weeks Later, Sunshine

  • Richard Pryke for Slumdog Millionaire (Winner):
    28 Days Later

  • David Parker for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button:
    The Skeleton Key*, Dark Water, Van Helsing, The Mothman Prophecies*, The Mummy Returns, Cecil B. DeMented, Pecker
    (John Waters!), Tremors II: Aftershocks, Ed Wood, Serial Mom, Amityville: A New Generation, Children of the Night, The Fly II, The Blood of Heroes (Post-Apocalyptic Rutger Hauer), My Best Friend Is a Vampire, Pin (a film I have been dying to see), April Fool’s Day, Creature (Media Home Entertainment VHS; released in a big box? We could only have hoped)

  • Michael Semanick for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button:
    Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, King Kong
    (remake), The Village*, Hellboy, Signs*, The Mothman Prophecies*, Air Bud: Golden Receiver (just snuck that in there didn’t I?), Ed Wood, Serial Mom, Amityville: A New Generation, Rampage (A great Friedkin flick) (Oh, and he also worked on a lot of the Ernest films including Ernest Scared Stupid; of interest perhaps for there are Trolls in it. Ok maybe not)

  • Ren Klyce for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button:
    Sound Department:
    Se7en*

    Music Department:
    Se7en* (Music Consultant: David Fincher)

  • Mark Weingarten for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button:
    “True Blood”, Snakes on a Plane (classy), Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare, Rejuvenatrix (This one is for you Gingold), Deadly Illusion (Larry Cohen and some Billy Dee Williams)

  • Ed Novick for The Dark Knight:
    A Simple Plan
    (Thee Raimi), The Crow: City of Angels*, Masters of the Universe (Meg Foster as Evil Lyn), Exterminator 2 (Cannon Group Inc.; Banned in Finland 1985), Liquid Sky (80’s Cult Film released on Media Home Entertainment VHS)

  • Lora Hirschberg for The Dark Knight:
    The Ring, The Faculty, Halloween H20: 20 Years Later, Mimic

  • Gary Rizzo for The Dark Knight:
    My Bloody Valentine 3-D, Starship Troopers 2: Hero of the Federation, Hellboy, Darkness Falls, Mimic 2, The Exorcist
    (2000 Special Edition), Dracula 2000 (Roger Corman at the Oscars), The Prophecy 3: The Ascent, Lake Placid, The Haunted Village

  • Tom Myers for WALL·E:
    Wes Craven Presents: They, Lake Placid, Mimic

  • Michael Semanick for WALL·E:
    Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, King Kong
    (remake), Corpse Bride, The Village*, Hellboy, Signs*, The Mothman Prophecies*, The Faculty, Ed Wood, Amityville: A New Generation, Rampage

  • Ben Burtt for WALL·E:
    Sound Department:
    The Dark Crystal*, Howard the Duck (!!!), Death Race 2000 (1975), (Also everything Star Wars, ever)

    Special Effects:
    The Milpitas Monster

  • Chris Jenkins for Wanted:
    Death Race, Resident Evil: Extinction, Underworld: Evolution, Exorcist: The Beginning, Dawn of the Dead
    (remake), Freejack (so bad; saw it in the theater), RoboCop 2, Rampage, Day of the Dead, Creepshow

  • Frank A. Montaño for Wanted:
    Death Race, Underworld: Evolution, Exorcist: The Beginning, Dawn of the Dead
    (remake), Timecop (best Ron-Silver-shattering-like-glass-moment ever captured on film), Body Snatchers, Addams Family Values, Outlaw of Gor (Super tacky, like Deathstalker, but more nudity)

  • Petr Forejt for Wanted:
    AVP: Alien vs. Predator, Van Helsing, Revenge of the Rats


    Best Achievement in Sound Editing

  • Richard King for Dark Knight (Winner):
    The Exorcist (Re-Release), Blue Steel (Just because we need more Ron Silver on the list)

  • Frank E. Eulner for Iron Man:
    The Village*, Starship Troopers 2: Hero of the Federation, Hellboy, Dracula 2000, The Prophecy 3: The Ascent, The Haunting, Lake Placid, Halloween H20: 20 Years Later, Mars Attacks!, Serial Mom

  • Christopher Boyes for Iron Man:
    King Kong (Remake), Dracula 2000

  • Tom Sayers for Slumdog Millionaire:
    28 Weeks Later, Sunshine, 28 Days Later

  • Ben Burtt for WALL·E:
    Sound Department:
    The Dark Crystal*, Howard the Duck (!!!), Death Race 2000 (1975), (Also everything Star Wars, ever)

  • Wylie Stateman for Wanted:
    Grindhouse, The Skeleton Key*, Exorcist: The Beginning, Mighty Joe Young
    (remake), The Relic, Tron


    Best Achievement in Visual Effects:

  • Steve Preeg for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (winner)
    King Kong (remake), Lawnmower Man 2: Beyond Cyberspace

  • Craig Barron for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (winner):

    The Ring, Mighty Joe Young (remake), Ghost in the Machine, Dracula, Darkman, Arachnophobia*, RoboCop 2, Gremlins 2: The New Batch, The Witches of Eastwick*, Poltergeist, Dragonslayer (because it was on a Fango cover … Barron also worked on many of the beloved 80s sci-fi/fantasy films as a matte guy; E.T., Explorers, Enemy Mine, The Goonies, The Neverending Story, Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal, just to name a few)

  • Chris Corbould for The Dark Knight
    The Mummy, Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles, Alien 3, Nightbreed, Link, Lifeforce, Krull
    (because it is always on Cinemax)

  • Paul J. Franklin for The Dark Knight
    Resident Evil: Apocalypse

  • John Nelson for Iron Man:
    Wolf, Forbidden Zone
    (Visual Effects Animator)

  • Ben Snow for Iron Man:
    King Kong
    (remake), Van Helsing, The Mummy

  • Daniel Sudick for Iron Man:
    Wolf

  • Shane Mahan for Iron Man:
    Working at Stan Winston Studio: Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles, Predator 2, Leviathan, The Monster Squad, Predator, Aliens, The Vindicator

    Miscellaneous Crew:
    A Gnome Named Gnorm (Gnorm wrangler)

    Make-Up Department:
    Chiller

    Animation Department:
    Invaders from Mars


    Best Animated Feature Film of the Year:

  • John Stevenson for Kung Fu Panda:
    Little Shop of Horrors
    (1986), Labyrinth*, The Dark Crystal*


    Best Documentary, Features:

  • Werner Herzog for Encounters at the End of the World:
    Nosferatu the Vampyre


    Stars Mentioned in Passing:

  • Maila Nurmi aka Vampira
    Actress:
    Plan 9 from Outer Space, “The Vampira Show”

  • Stan Winston
    Make-Up Department:
    The Island of Dr. Moreau, Interview with the Vampire: The, Vampire Chronicles, Wes Craven’s Chiller, Friday the 13th Part III, The Thing, Dead & Buried, The Hand, The Entity, The Exterminator, The Island, Dracula’s Dog, Mansion of the Doomed, Dr. Black, Mr. Hyde, The Bat People, Gargoyles

    Special Effects:
    Darkness Falls, Lake Placid, The Relic, Predator 2, Leviathan, The Monster Squad, Predator, “Amazing Stories”* (The one with Christopher Lloyd), Aliens, Invaders from Mars, The Vindicator, The Phantom of the Opera (1983), Dracula’s Dog

    Miscellaneous Crew:
    Predator 2 (Creature Creation), Leviathan (Creature Designer), The Monster Squad (monsters)

    Producer:
    Mermaid Chronicles Part 1: She Creature, How to Make a Monster

    Director:
    A Gnome Named Gnorm, Pumpkinhead

    Second Unit Director or Assistant Director:
    Aliens

    Visual Effects:
    Parasite

    Writer:
    Pumpkinhead

    Costume and Wardrobe Department:
    “The Star Wars Holiday Special”

  • Charles H. Schneer
    Producer:
    Clash of the Titans, Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger, The Valley of Gwangi, First Men in the Moon, Jason and the Argonauts, The 3 Worlds of Gulliver, The 7th Voyage of Sinbad, 20 Million Miles to Earth, It Came from Beneath the Sea, Earth vs. the Flying Saucers (produced films featuring Ray Harryhausen’s stop-motion magic)

  • James Whitmore
    Actor:
    The Relic, The Shawshank Redemption (King!), “The Ray Bradbury Theater”, “The Twilight Zone”

  • Leonard Rosenman
    Composer:
    RoboCop 2, “Amazing Stories”*, Prophecy, The Car, The Possessed, Sybil (I was scared of the disembodied cat head when I was little…), The Phantom of Hollywood, The Cat Creature, Battle for the Planet of the Apes, Fantastic Voyage, “The Alfred Hitchcock Hour”, “The Twilight Zone”

    Music Department:
    RoboCop 2 (Conductor)
    The Lord of the Rings (Conductor … I mention LOTR here because he was the conductor, and that is awesome)

  • Charlton Heston
    Actor:
    Soylent Green, The Omega Man

  • Roy Scheider
    Actor:
    Jaws, Jaws 2, Naked Lunch, Dracula II: Ascension, Dracula III: Legacy

  • Ricardo Montalban
    Actor:
    “Alfred Hitchcock Presents”, Conquest of the Planet of the Apes, Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan

  • Pat Hingle
    Actor:
    “The Twilight Zone”, Tarantulas: The Deadly Cargo, Maximum Overdrive, “The Shining”

  • Isaac Hayes
    Actor:
    Escape from L.A., “Tales from the Crypt”, Escape from New York (A-Number 1)

  • J. Paul Huntsman
    Sound Department:
    Pet Sematary II, Poltergeist II: The Other Side, Cat’s Eye, Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone

  • Nina Foch
    Actress:
    Cry of the Werewolf

  • David Watkin
    Cinematographer:
    Return to Oz, To the Devil a Daughter, Mahogany (Anthony Perkins acting nuts), The Devils, Marat/Sade

  • Robert Mulligan
    Writer:
    “Dark Shadows”

  • Evelyn Keyes
    Actress:
    Wicked Stepmother, A Return to Salem’s Lot, “Amazing Stories”*

  • Richard Widmark
    Actor:
    To the Devil a Daughter

  • Jules Dassin
    Director:
    The Tell-Tale Heart (1941)

  • Joseph M. Caracciolo
    Art Department:
    The Stepford Wives (1975), The Exorcist


    Special Guest:

    Janusz Kaminski:
    Cinematographer:
    Grim Prairie Tales: Hit the Trail… to Terror, The Terror Within II

    Camera and Electrical Department:

    Watchers II (Director of Photography: Second Unit), After Midnight (Chief Lighting Technician), Dance of the Damned (Gaffer)

    Director:
    Lost Souls


    Technical Awards:

    Gordon E. Sawyer Award

  • Ed Catmull
    Visual Effects: Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan (KKKKHHAAANNNNN!!!)

  • John A. Bonner Medal
    Mark Kimball
    TRON (Computer Systems and Software Development)

    Please click here and give these folks the attention they deserve.


    That’s a rap until next year fright fans, when I go back into the crypt and find out who worked on Basket Case 3 and Dead Pit. It could be any of them. I do dream of the day when a picture like Howling XII takes home an Oscar for Best Picture. And Joe Dante gets his Lifetime Achievement Award where he gives props to monster-kids everywhere. All things are possible in Hollyweird, U.S.A.

    Heather Buckley

    “>CHECK OUT DREAD CENTRAL’S NEW POSTER STORE!
    Got news? Click here to submit it!
    Discuss the amount of work put into this list in the Dread Central forums!

  • Continue Reading
    Comments

    Reviews

    Hell Night Blu-ray Review – Mischief & Mayhem At Mongoloid Manor

    Published

    on

    Starring Linda Blair, Peter Barton, Suki Goodwin, Vincent Van Patten

    Directed by Tom DeSimone

    Distributed by Scream Factory


    1981. Prime time for the slasher film, when studios were more than content to pump out one after another since production cost was often so low. The downside, though, was that many wound up being formulaic and, eventually, forgotten. Time has allowed the cream to rise to the top of that crop and while Hell Night (1981) isn’t among the best it does stand out due to some novel choices made by director Tom DeSimone and executive producer Chuck Russell, the man responsible for some of the most consistently entertaining horror films of the ‘80s. A dilapidated mansion, oozing with gothic atmosphere, stands in place of a college campus or generic forest setting. Characters are dressed in formal costume; a stark departure from typical ‘80s teen garb. The film is half haunted house, half crazed killer and there is a not-entirely-unexpected-but-definitely-welcome twist at the end providing a solid jolt to a beleaguered climax. Fans are rightly excited to see Hell Night makes its debut in HD, though the final product is still compromised despite Scream Factory’s best efforts.

    It’s Hell Night, every fraternity brother’s favorite evening; when new recruits are tormented in hazing rituals from, well, Hell. Peter (Kevin Brophy), president of the vaunted Alpha Sigma Rho house, comes up with the brilliant idea to have four pledges – Marti (Linda Blair), Jeff (Peter Barton), Denise (Suki Goodwin), and Seth (Vincent Van Patten) – spend the night in a decaying mansion. But this isn’t just any old house, as Peter regales a rapt audience – this is where former owner Raymond Garth killed his wife and three malformed children before hanging himself, sparing only the life of his son, Andrew, who was rumored to reside within the place after the murders. The pledges enter Garth Manor and quickly pair off, with Marti and Jeff getting intellectual while Denise and Seth take a more physical path.

    A few hours pass and Peter returns with some of his bros, planning to initiate a few good scare pranks they set up earlier that week. The chuckles don’t last long, though, because Jeff and Seth quickly find the shoddy wiring and poorly placed speakers rigged upstairs. What they don’t know is that there is an actual killer on the loose, and he just decapitated one of the girls. Leaving the labyrinthine home proves difficult, with Marti & Jeff getting lost within the catacombs beneath the estate, evading their mongoloid menace however possible. Seth, meanwhile, has to scale a massive spiked fence if they hope to get any help way out here. Wait, didn’t Peter mention something about Andrew having a sibling?

    The production team on this picture was a beast, and I’m convinced that’s the chief reason why it came out any good at all; specifically, the involvement of Chuck Russell and Irwin Yablans. I give a bit less credit to director Tom DeSimone, who up to that point (and after it) filled his filmography with lots and lots of gay porn; storyline and direction are usually secondary in that market. Hell, they even had Frank Darabont running around set as a P.A. which is just a cool fact because nobody listens to P.A.s on a film set. Music is just as important, too, and composer Dan Wyman is a synth master who worked with John Carpenter on his early films. His score here is reminiscent of those lo-fi masterpieces.

    Solid atmosphere and rounded characters make all the difference. Instead of a roster of stereotypical sophomoric faces the bulk of the film focuses on four individuals with personality and a bit of depth. Blair makes a good turn as the bookish good girl type, while Barton is a charming match for her mentally, showing interest in more than just a drunken hookup. Denise and Seth are both superficial, and their interactions inject the most humor into the film. Denise continually calling Seth “Wes” is one example. A good horror film gets the audience invested in who lives and dies, and while I won’t go so far as to say these are exemplary characters the script does make them three-dimensional and not so paper thin.

    The 1.85:1 1080p image is sourced from a 4K restoration of an archival 35mm print with standard definition inserts. This is a step up from Anchor Bay’s old DVD but not by leaps and bounds. Colors attain greater saturation and definition is tightened but the picture looks awfully soft too often and the jump between HD and SD footage is plain as day. The print displays vertical scratches and white flecks. Black levels are decent but there is clear room for improvement across the board. To their credit this is the best image Scream Factory was able to produce but fans should temper expectations going in because this is not a pristine picture by any means.

    There is nothing wrong to be found with the English DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 mono track, which does a fine job of carrying the dialogue alongside Dan Wyman’s sinister synth soundtrack. Direction is limited and the presentation is routine, but no problems were detected and the track capably supports the feature. Subtitles are available in English.

    Here is where Scream Factory does their best to make up for the shortcomings of the a/v presentation: a ton of extra features.

    An audio commentary track features actress Linda Blair, director Tom DeSimone, and producers Irwin Yablans & Bruce Cohn Curtis.

    “Linda Blair: The Beauty of Horror” – This is a recent discussion with the actress, who covers her run in the genre in addition to diving deep into this film’s difficult production.

    “Hell Nights with Tom DeSimone” – Shot on location at the Garth Manor (actually Kimberly Crest Estate in Redlands, CA), DeSimone reflects back on shooting the film there over 35 years ago.

    “Peter Barton: Facing Fear” – The actor offers up expected discussion, covering his career in horror and navigating the Hollywood scene.

    “Producing Hell with Bruce Cohn Curtis” – This covers more of the behind-the-scenes work that went into making the movie.

    “Writing Hell” – Screenwriter Randy Feldman offers up some insight into his process for creating the story and writing the script.

    “Vincent Van Patten & Suki Goodwin in Conversation” – The two actors, who have not seen each other in quite some time, sit down together for a back-and-forth discussion.

    “Kevin Brophy & Jenny Neumann in Conversation” – This is another chat conducted the same way as Van Patten & Goodwin.

    “Gothic Design in Hell Night” – Art director Steven Legler talks about his process for turning Garth Manor into how it is seen on film; evoking the right chilling atmosphere.

    “Anatomy of the Death Scenes” – Pam Peitzman, make-up artist, and John Eggett, special effects, scrutinize each of the film’s kill scenes and discuss what went into achieving them.

    “On Location at Kimberly Crest” – DeSimone guides viewers on a tour of the “Garth Manor” as it can be seen today.

    A theatrical trailer, two TV spots, a radio spot, and a photo gallery are the remaining features.

    Special Features:

    • NEW 4K Scan of the film taken from the best surviving archival print
    • NEW interviews with actors Linda Blair, Peter Barton, Vincent Van Patten, Suki Goodwin, Kevin Brophy and Jenny Neumann
    • Audio Commentary with Linda Blair, Tom DeSimone, Irwin Yablans and Bruce Cohn Curtis
    • Original Theatrical Trailer & TV spots
    • Blu-ray Disc Exclusives:
      • NEW interview with Director Tom DeSimone
      • NEW interview with Producer Bruce Cohn Curtis
      • NEW interview with Writer Randolph Feldman
      • NEW – Anatomy of the Death Scenes with Tom DeSimone, Randolph Feldman, Make-up artist Pam Peitzman, Art Director Steven G. Legler and Special Effects artist John Eggett
      • NEW – On Location at the Kimberly Crest House with Tom DeSimone
      • NEW – Gothic Design in Hell Night with Steven G. Legler
      • Original Radio spot
      • Photo Gallery featuring rare, never-before-seen stills
    • Hell Night
    • Special Features
    4.0

    Summary

    “Hell Night” overcomes being lumped in with standard slasher fare thanks to dripping atmosphere, unique production design, and characters that elicit some empathy. The a/v presentation leaves much to be desired but a plethora of bonus features softens that blow.

    Sending
    User Rating 0 (0 votes)
    Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)
    Continue Reading

    News

    Video: The Shape of Water Q&A with Guillermo del Toro and Doug Jones at Hollywood’s Egyptian Theatre

    Published

    on

    This past weekend at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, CA betwixt a double screening of The Shape of Water and the classic The Creature from the Black Lagoon, the former’s director Guillermo del Toro (and star Doug Jones) sat down to discuss the latter’s influence on the film, Gill-man sex, “one sock movies,” his career in the genre, and more with moderator Jonah Ray, and we were there to film a portion of it.

    Our sincere thanks to American Cinematheque general manager Dennis Bartok for extending the invitation.

    For more Cinematheque screenings, visit the official website here.

    Continue Reading

    Reviews

    The Open House Review – Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here

    Published

    on

    Starring Dylan Minnette, Piercey Dalton, Patricia Bethune, Sharif Atkins

    Written by Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote

    Directed by Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote


    Mere weeks, even days, after effusively beating Netflix’s original horror content drum (The Babysitter, Before I Wake, Creep 2), I’m here to confirm that The Open House is emptier than an vacant bomb shelter. Cold, unappealing and thoughtlessly plotted to the point where “generic” would have been an improvement. From the moment we’re welcomed into Matt Angel and Suzanne Coote’s scripted imprisonment, it’s nothing but loose floorboards and busted plumbing. The home invasion genre has rarely been navigated with such little attention to detail, asking for our suspension of coherent storytelling early, often, and without earning the right to be deemed mindless genre fun. Not even Ty Pennington could save this extreme renovation disaster.

    Dylan Minnette plays Logan Wallace, a track star and student who must find closure after watching his father fall victim to a fatal car accident. It is his mother Naomi’s (Piercey Dalton) idea to spend a little time away from their suburban home – escape those painful memories – so they retreat to her sister’s luxurious mountain getaway. The catch? It’s in the process of being sold and open houses are on the regular, so Naomi and Logan must vacate their temporary premises on certain days. It’s after one of these very showings that Logan begins to notice slight changes around the house, and he fears that an unwanted visitor may be in their midst. Guess what? He’s right.

    To understand how little The Open House cares about conscious blueprinting, just read the poster’s tagline. “You can’t lock out what’s already inside” – right, but you could have prevented them from coming in, or checked the house to make sure they weren’t squatting, or explored numerous other possibilities to avoid this scenario. The mansion’s realtor allows prospective buyers to come and go but it’s not her job to make sure no one’s hiding in the basement? Naomi can’t even keep track of the *single* visitor she lets look around the house? It’s infuriating to see so many people neglect safety out of forced coincidence because the script couldn’t rationalize the killer’s entry any other way – a confounding strike one.

    This is also a film that admits no reasoning for why its own murderer has targeted the Wallaces, or why he stokes a violent fetish when it comes to open houses. We never actually see his face, just his imposing handyman-looking attire, nor do we savor any kind of tangible backstory (his family died during their own open house and he suffered a psychotic breakdown – just give me *something*). His undefined form never demands curiosity like John Carpenter’s “The Shape” once did, because scripting is nothing more than bullet notes for basic horror movie necessities. Here he is, your bad guy – too bad he’s introduced without fear, handled without originality and unable to characterize beyond torturous kidnapper dotted lines. He’s just, you know, a guy who sneaks into open houses and kills – COMPLETE WITH A FINAL PAN-IN ON AN OPEN HOUSE SIGN WHEN HE MOVES TO HIS NEXT TARGET [eye roll into infinity].

    Every scene in The Open House feels like an afterthought. “Ah, we need a way to build tension – how about a senile local woman who lives down the street and wanders aimlessly into frame?” Overplayed and in no way suitable to most her inclusions, but sure. “Oh, and we need inner conflict – what about if the breaker-iner steals Logan’s phone and frames him for later acts?” I mean, didn’t Logan canonically lose his phone even before Naomi’s mid-shower water heater issues – but sure, instant fake tension. “How are people going to believe the killer is always around and never blows his cover – think they’ll just buy it?” No, we don’t. Worse off, his cat-and-mouse game is dully repetitive until a finale that skyrockets intensity with jarring tonal imbalance. This closing, dreadful end without any sort of redemptive quality. More abusive than it is fulfilling.

    If there’s anything positive worth conveying, it’s that Minnette does a fine job shuffling around as a character with severe sight impairment. The killer makes a point to remove his contacts as a final “FUCK YOU,” just to toy around a bit more, and Minnette frantically slips or stumbles with nothing more than foggy vision. Otherwise, dialogue finds itself ripped form a billion other straight-to-TV Logo dramas about broken families, no moment ever utilizing horror past a few shadowy forms standing in doorways after oblivious characters turn away. You can’t just take an overused subgenre and sleepwalk through homogenized beats…case and god-forsaken point.

    Even as a streamable Netflix watch, The Open House is irredeemable beyond fault. The walls are caving in on this dilapidated excuse for home invasion horror, benefiting not from the star power of a temperamental Dylan Minnette. I have seen most involved players here in far better projects (Minnette’s stock has rightfully been skyrocketing, Matt Angel in The Funhouse Massacre, etc), but this is bargain bin theatrics without a fully formed idea. A nameless villain, doomed nice guy (Sharif Atkins), woefully unaware plot advancement – all the worst cliches found in one rage-quit worthy effort. Anyone who makes it through deserves an award…or a dunce cap.

    • The Open House
    1.0

    Summary

    Unless you’re irrationally afraid of cold showers, The Open House fails to deliver on a premise that can be summed up by no more than two lines of text.

    Sending
    User Rating 0 (0 votes)
    Continue Reading

    Recent Comments

    Advertisement

    Join the Box of Dread Mailing List

    * indicates required

    Go Ad Free!

    Support Dread Central on Patreon!

    Trending

    Copyright © 2017 Dread Central Media LLC