Saturday, November 8, 2014

House at the End of the Street - 8 stars out of 10

House at the End of the Street - 8 stars out of 10

“House at the End of the Street” is completely underrated.  I consider this not-too-scary horror film to be more of a psychological thriller, and I believe that the lack of scares is what left the critics wanting more.  While the film lacks jump-scenes and horrific imagery, I would take a creepy “who knows what skeletons are hiding in your neighbors’ closets” mind-bender over cheap scares any day.  The story is fresh and lingers beyond the closing credits to effectively leave you wondering how well you know your acquaintances.  It is hard to believe that Jennifer Lawrence played this role in the same year that she won the Oscar for “Silver Linings Playbook,” but that is a testament to the quality of her acting.  She defies the bad-acting-in-horror-films stereotype and I could really empathize with her character.  I can confidently say that she is becoming the next great actor of this generation.  Max Thieriot rises to the challenge of acting opposite of Lawrence and the writers draw us into his world through the development of his character.  I cannot say the same for Elisabeth Shue, who delivered a bland performance and didn’t create a connection with the audience.  The story develops with a Hitchcockian suspense that reveals important information without us realizing it.  The twists are absolutely shocking, and yet, they are completely logical.  The clues are there and once the truth is revealed, we are surprised because it all adds up (instead of being surprised because of something unbelievable and far-fetched).  I enjoyed this story so much that I am pretty upset that I will never get to be surprised by the ending again.  I generally only feel this letdown after a great Hitchcock twist, so this is one of the greatest compliments that I can pay to this film.  The critics ripped it apart, but I have no problem saying that “House at the End of the Street” is a must-see thriller.

[Pictured: Jennifer Lawrence is becoming the next great actor of this generation]

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