House

Today we have a horror comedy that for my money is neither enough to be horror and not funny enough to be a comedy. But it is an unforgettable movie.

Tell me if you’ve heard this premise before. A man is grieving the loss of his son. He moves to an old house. Strange supernatural phenomenon occur. I’m the end, he’s reunited with his son. I may sound especially familiar because it’s the exact same premise as my horror movie from yesterday. This is something I love about horror films. The exact same premise can be executed with completely different visions and approaches. Yesterdays movie was very scary and serious. Todays movie is neither.

I began this movie believing it was a serious scary haunted house movie of the 1980’s. A hidden gem as it were. And the movie had me convinced it was serious for the first half hour. Roger Cobb is a writer who is suffering writers block, dealing with a crumbling marriage, and inheriting the house of his dead aunt. There’s a lot of great dramatic fodder here. Which made it all the more jarring when Cobb opens a closet one night, and I giant rubbery puppet creature leaps out and starts attacking him.

No more psychological drama. No more haunted house. Now it’s Bugs Bunny. Cobb buys a thousand cameras and an army uniform and sets about trying to photograph the monster.

In the shed he gets attacked by flying gardening equipment and if you squint you won’t see the strings making those sheets fly.

Later, he cuts the hand off a monster and the hand does a bunch of silly cartoonish bits crawling around the floor and on the neighbor kid.

In between these shenanigans there is a scene where Cobb believes he’s killed someone. Henhouses the body in the closet while the police arrive. He must navigate the police and his own guilt in a scene designed to be tense and suspenseful.

My problem with the movie is that I’m never sure what scene I should take seriously and which scenes are jokes. The flying rake is definitely a joke. The weird banshee creature? I don’t know. The hidden body scene? I don’t know.

I could never get my bearings with this movie. It’s silly and dumb, but it’s also fast paced and very entertaining. I laughed out loud at multiple moments. It was more due to the wild tonal shifts than the actual jokes, but a laugh is a laugh.

Overall, I enjoyed this film. It’s my cup of tea, but I don’t highly recommend it. It’s a memorably disjointed experience. If you’re looking for a good bad movie this is a great option. If you want something actually scary or genuinely funny look elsewhere. B

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