The House of the Devil Reviews

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March 22, 2010
The power of this film lies in the approach to the inevitable final act, rather than the realisation of the act itself.
Top Critic
March 19, 2010
Although the last reel is a little disappointing, the twist ending is a scream.
March 19, 2010
Things quickly get silly and unscary.
March 19, 2010
The film's nostalgic design is subtle enough not to dampen the seriously sinister atmospherics.
December 17, 2009
In keeping with his models, West is concerned with not suspense exactly but the ritual withholding and ultimate lavishing of bloody chaos.
December 3, 2009
West, a rising young director of minor cult pleasures, comes clean here about his love for all things Bava (Mario) and Carpenter (John).
November 19, 2009
There's a payoff in The House of the Devil, if you have the patience. Some of the scenes seem draggy, but the characters are complex, and their motivations are explained.
November 12, 2009
Even the familiar tropes of The House of the Devil are familiar in the right way, like an old, bloodstained sweater.
November 12, 2009
The film may provide an introduction for some audience members to the Hitchcockian definition of suspense: It's the anticipation, not the happening, that's the fun.
October 30, 2009
More concerned with stretching nail-biting suspense to the breaking point than finding new ways of making heads explode.
October 30, 2009
Although the payoff is creepy, it takes a little too long to arrive -- and when it does, it's about as worn-out as the movie's title.
October 30, 2009
The House of the Devil is really a romance: a love letter to the kind of gal we thought had given up the ghost.
October 30, 2009
West's assured way with widescreen framing, long takes and silences followed by sharp if explainable noise are almost cruelly funny in their heart-stopping pleasures.
October 29, 2009
After years of vivisectionist splatter, here is a horror movie with real shivers.
October 29, 2009
West avoids cliché and cheesiness with wise casting choices. Donahue's naturalistic performance is as persuasive as the subtly sinister portrayals by Tom Noonan and Mary Woronov.
October 29, 2009
A slightly faster set-up, and slightly more drawn-out climax, would make this even better.
October 29, 2009
From the opening statistic about documented instances of devil-worship, West aims for a mix of the plausible and the ridiculous...
October 28, 2009
Writer-director Ti West's crisp, economical, satisfying little horror pic reclaims the pleasures of the kind of old-school formula that the jokey Scream franchise deconstructed into satire.
October 28, 2009
When the Karo syrup finally hits the fan, the film loses its footing some, but only because no concrete explanations could possibly do justice to West's expert buildup.
October 27, 2009
In the end, this homage to '80s horror is little more than a faithful flashback -- authentic in execution but about as scary as something you saw again and again way back when.
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