True story: Ghoulies was the only horror movie my mother ever forbade my brother and I to watch as children. I’m not certain of the reason, but I figure she was concerned that it would make us scared of using the toilet.
Interestingly enough, only a couple seconds of this movie involve a monster coming out of the toilet. That was played up in the later franchise installments, but this movie, in spite of the tagline, has very little bathroom horror. Instead, it’s very much like the other satanic puppet stories you are familiar with. Of course, these aren’t supposed to be puppets, but who are we kidding? This movie is like Jim Henson on crack.
House of the Devil is one of those cool movies you never hear about. Watching it, you’d probably never guess it was released in 2009. The film is shot on 16mm film using 1980s film techniques. The results are impressive, as it really feels like an 80s horror movie.
Adding to that is the understated tone of the film. This is no Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Rather than relying on gore or cheap scares, the film relies on an understanding of American cultural history- namely the satanic cult scares of the period it emulates. The story follows a college student who takes a job as a babysitter in a big creepy house. Well, that pretty much is the story.
It’s slow moving, but should be a nice change of pace considering the films we’ve been watching recently. Enjoy the creativity and strikingly different take on contemporary horror.