Sarah returns with her father and uncle to fix up the family's longtime summerhouse after it was violated by squatters in the off-season. As they work in the dark, Sarah begins to hear sounds from within the walls of the boarded-up building. Although she barely remembers the place, Sarah senses the past may still haunt the home.
Read no further if spine-chilling, skin-prickling, nightmare-inducing "horror" flicks are not highlighted on your movie menu.
It is challenging to verbalize the addiction, affliction, attraction to terrifying, tortuous "scary" genres; they are universally ubiquitous and multitudes flock to first screenings at film festivals.
At the risk of offending those whose tastes conflict with mine, I am an elitist when it comes to the fear factor; it has to be real, believable; the first "Halloween" (1978) ranked at the top of the horror heap until "Michael" did not die; it skidded into the fantastical, unbelievable; eliminating the reality of a murderous, mortal miscreant. I also draw the line at "slasher", "saw", "vampire", stomach- rebelling, grizzly gore and guts: selections absent from my film fare. At this point Australia's "Wolf Creek" (2005) garnishes the Oscar as the most frightening film I have ever seen; resulting in a temporary remission from my fascination of fiendish flicks.
"Silent House", a remake of Gustavo Hernandez's "Las Casa Muda" supposedly based on actual events which occurred in 1940's, Uruguay, registered on my scare scale close to the summit. Husband and wife directors Chris Kentis and Laura Lau ("Open Water", brilliantly, brutally, truthfully terrifying) have created a well-crafted, structured scenario, filmed in real time; the audience crawls through the shuddered, creepy darkness with the hapless "Sarah"; all emphasize with her painful, paralyzing plight.
Rarely do I go to a film for the actor but "Silent House" was an exception. Elizabeth Olsen ("Martha Mary May Marlene") as the persecuted "Sarah" is beyond riveting; her potency as a performer is infused with the divine; she is mesmerizing; she thrashes, scorches and devours every scene; her metamorphism, without precedence; a force at twenty-three, I jubilantly anticipate her smashing, meteoric assent.
If this is your first tasting of the "ghastly" you might be tempted to go back for seconds.
èThis movie is not scary, not suspenseful, not intriguing; its just bad. If I had not been with a group I would have walked out long before the end. I have to disagree with the comment above that Olsen does a good job, because I was not impressed; but then the plot wasnt much to work with.
We went to this movie with high expectations but were, again, not surprised, so disappointed. We are so tired of low budget movies that depend on the acting abilities of not only a single actor but a single (shaky) camera to elicit suspense. We have been more frightened by those flash monster images that pop up in unsuspecting e-mails. WHAT A HUGE waste of money in todays economy. This movie has no substance. Once again this movie revolves around abuse in childhood and the subjects inability to cope in the real world, of course you don't know this until the end but when you find out, it feels like such a lame premise to build a movie on. When is someone going to make a horror movie that truly deserves that title? Just for the record, Elizabeth Olsen does a good job eliciting fear but that's pretty much all that the movie is about.