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Horror - Ghosts

Housebound (2014)

Duration1h 47m
RatingsUK: 18, USA: Not Rated, Spain: 18 
Source of storyAn original screenplay
DirectorGerard Johnstone
Writers/ScriptGerard Johnstone
StarringMorgana O’Reilly, Rima Te Wiata, Glen-Paul Waru, Ryan Lampp
RatingsIMDb: 6.8 by 32,508 people .  Rotten Tomatoes: 95% by 42 reviewers.

Elevator Pitch: Kylie is a wayward young woman, who after a failed robbery of an ATM is sentenced to a period of house arrest in her mother’s large but forbidding house. The two do not get on, but after her mother’s assertion that the house is haunted Kylie investigates and it seems that the house was once a hostel for recently released ex-criminals, and that it was the site of a gruesome murder.

Amos, the security contractor with the task of monitoring Kylie’s tag, is a ghost hunter so helps her out. While cleaning up she finds tunnels within the walls of the house, and then an inhabitant, but neither the police or her psychiatrist believe her. What to do?

Content: There is no sex or nudity, but some drinking and quite a bit of smoking. The atmosphere in the house is tense with numerous sudden, quiet, quiet, BANG! events. The plot is moved forward by newspaper articles, and debris in the house’s cellar. The meetings with the psychiatrist are often extremely entertaining due to Kylie’s language, and so are the times when Kylie reports things to the police, who are laughably thick. Young people might find the ghostly aspects a bit frightening, even though it is all explained at the end.

A View: This is a very low budget film from New Zealand, cost almost nothing, but made almost nothing. I was attracted because of the success of “What We Do in the Shadows”.  It was quite well thought of by the few critics who reviewed it and it won some local prizes. It appears to start with like something from The Conjuring and it moves pretty slowly, but it is worth giving it the time, because it becomes a lot of fun.

Additional Info:  The plot turns on the existence of what Wikipedia calls “a retainer”. Actually I would call it a dental plate; a fitting with a couple of false teeth attached.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels

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