7 July 2016

EXORCIST: HOUSE OF EVIL. (2016) REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS.




EXORCIST: HOUSE OF EVIL. (2016) WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY DAVID TROTTI. STARRING AMY HOLLAND PENNELL, MARK HOLZUM, CONNOR TRINEER, PETER MAYER AND JOHN PIERSON. REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

Ah Jaysis. This is a terrible film. That's not to say I didn't enjoy it, though. Au contraire. My best mate and I had a great laugh watching this, although I'm afraid that most of the laughs were at the expense of the movie. If a film gives you a giggle or two, I'd consider it a success of sorts, haha.

I bought the DVD because I love the original movie of THE EXORCIST, and the third one as well which is sort of a continuation, many years later, of the first film. Being a natural scaredy-cat, it took me a long time to work up to watching these films. Every glimpse I'd ever caught in magazines or online of Regan's 'possessed' face gave me the willies big-time. It still has the power to disturb me.

Once I'd done it though, once I'd plucked up the courage to watch 'em, I was delighted with myself and started watching every exorcist/exorcism/demonic possession film I could get my eager little mitts on. And this, of course, is how come I walked into my local DVD emporium recently in the mood for a good 'possession' film and picked up EXORCIST: HOUSE OF EVIL.

Apparently it was filmed in the original EXORCIST house, which would be the house in which the spooky events took place that inspired William Peter Blatty to write his iconic horror novel. That was similar to the way in which PSYCHO writer Robert Bloch used real-life Wisconsin serial killer Ed Gein as the basis for his game-changing novel about motel-owning transvestite, Norman Bates. It's all grist for the mill, as someone famous once said. Clearly I'm having trouble remembering exactly whom, haha, or I'd have used his actual name.

I love the house. The house is gorgeous. There's no problem with the house. It's one of those typical big old American houses in which you could easily imagine creepy paranormal events transpiring. The shots of the exterior of the house in the rain are stunning. I love the rain. I'm so hot for it, haha.

The house on the DVD box appears to be a different house to the one in the movie, by the way. It's just a small point, of course, but it's the kind of thing we viewers tend to notice. We're not fools.

Any-hoo, there's this young couple, Amy and Luke, and they're just dying to move into the exorcism house, even though Amy's a direct descendant of the family to whom the original evil events occurred back in 1949.

Yep, Amy knows all about the little possessed boy and the skeletons in her family closet, but she still can't wait to move in. She's apparently always had a kind of 'shining' thing going on with the house. The house speaks to her in voices. Cuckoo...!

Amy is a great gal. The director takes great pains to show us her curvaceous backside in the first half of the film. She prances about in tight vest tops and barely-there denim cut-offs while she inspects the house or in tiny knickers at home eating peanuts out of a bowl.

In one scene, in which she's lying on the couch with her boyfriend Luke, she's actually positioned like she's being prepped for a flippin' colonoscopy. We get it, Mr. Director Sir. She's got a great butt. Now could we get to the plot already, please?

There isn't too much of that. Plot, I mean. It's just basically Amy and her Lovely Butt going back and forth to the house and getting spooked by stuff that happens there. She never even moves into the bloody place, which is a bit of a swizz. 

The stuff that happens isn't remotely scary, just so you know. Peoples' eyes being turned black by a computer isn't particularly scary as and of itself, without anything to back it up. Neither is using a voice distorter that sounds like it was knocked up by two boys in shop class. You can't really hear what anyone's saying so you're sitting there going: 'Sorry, what? What was that about the devil?' Sigh.

I think this might have been one of those low-budget dealies. Not that there's anything wrong with a cheaply-made film, mind you. It's just that this one is not very good, and it's only about as scary as a tub of rank coleslaw a week or two past its sell-by date...!

I really liked Father Halloran, who comes to the House Of Evil to bless it despite having tangled with the devil who dwells therein some fifty years ago. Good on him. Some people wouldn't do it.

Father Bowdern from 1949 seemed like a solid dependable kick-ass kind of priest fellow too. I love the way priests prepare for an exorcism, kissing their purple scarf things and whatnot and flinging their holy water about the place. It's so cool.

Speaking of their preparations, is it remotely believable that a slightly-built young female could tie all four extremities of a fully-grown man (a police cop, no less!) in the throes of demonic possession to the bed all by herself in a few seconds...? Nope. Didn't think so.

The best scene by miles is when Amy and her cousin Gordon are having a bit of a ding-dong in the exorcism house and you can clearly see the reflection of Phil the Boom-Operator in the window behind them.

I don't really know if his name is Phil or not. That's just what my friend and I nicknamed him. We had great craic loudly singing 'Boom-Operator' off-key (very much off-key!) to the tune of Sade's wonderful 'Smooth Operator.' Try it for yourself and see how much fun it is.

Apart from laughing ourselves hoarse at Phil the Boom-Operator, there wasn't much more enjoyment to be had from EXORCIST: HOUSE OF EVIL. There's no creepy atmosphere or gradual build-up of the sense of impending doom. Without that, an exorcism film isn't going to be much cop. That's just my own personal opinion, though. Other people might love this film. (I somehow doubt it, though...!)

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.

Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, film blogger and movie reviewer. She has studied Creative Writing and Film-Making. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, womens' fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra's books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015GDE5RO

 You can contact Sandra at:


http://sandrafirstruleoffilmclubharris.wordpress.com








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