Friday, 9 April 2010
The House Of The Devil
What makes The House Of The Devil, just out on DVD and Blu-ray in the UK, one of the best horror movies of the last few decades isn't only the film's lovingly retro recreation of 70s and 80s horror cinema, but the lengths its writer-director Ti West (Cabin Fever 2) goes to to eke the suspense out from this simple story of determined, impoverish college student Samantha (Jocelin Donahue, terrific) who agrees to babysit for a creepy couple (Tom Noonan and Mary Woronov) on the night of a lunar eclipse with devilish consequences, spending three-quarters of the film's running time building tension, before finally unleashing a bloody denouement of unrelenting terror. West brings a David Fincher-like precision to this 80s-set homage, using 16mm film stock, zooms rather than dolly shots, as well as period framing and editing techniques. And yet West's future cult classic never feels like a parody. Rather, it's a movie lost in time, now available to scare the bejesus out of you.