Friday, October 16, 2015

The Houses October Built (USA, 2014)

Nine Things About The Houses October Built

1. I've seen some really bad found-footage horror films, but this movie is one of the worst I've ever seen. It is proof that just because you have a video camera at home and have an idea for a movie, that doesn't mean you should actually make it.

2. The idea of the movie isn't bad. It's supposed to be about a group of 5 people who are tired of the regular haunted house attractions that pop up before Halloween, and they go on a cross-country quest in their RV for a rumored real one that doesn't fake the things that happen inside.

3. Unfortunately, most of the movie is either pointless conversation between the characters (who sometimes read poems), or sloppy camera footage inside real haunted house attractions. I suspect that the script must have been written when the writer (and star of the movie), Zack Andrews, was stoned.

4. Nobody tries to explain why they need six video cameras (with infinite batteries and storage space) strapped to the inside and outside of their RV. How many times are they going to want to watch something from the position of their tire? Or what you can see behind the vehicle?

5. I think one of the main characters was supposed to be a serial killer, but nobody ever really seemed bothered that the dude brought girls to the RV at night, and then he wore their clothes the next morning after the girl disappeared. They were too busy discussing where they should go next while rolling up joints.

6. While walking toward one of their nightly haunted houses, one of characters said something to the effect that it looked like it was made by bored teenagers. Which is funny, because I had just thought the same thing about the movie.  I think most of the budget was spent on those rubber masks you can buy from Halloween stores starting about Labor Day.

7. Some of the footage inside the haunted houses had some chilling and unsettling moments. I think. It's too bad the person holding the camera was usually screaming and waving the camera around, so you mostly just saw blurs of light and plastic or plywood walls.

8. For some reason, a couple of the monsters in one of the haunted houses appeared again halfway across the country an another house. I'm not sure if this meant supernatural trickery was happening, or if the filmmakers just couldn't afford another mask.

9. This could have been an interesting movie. But once again, the no-budget found footage gimmick, combined with a rambling script that never answered any of the questions it made you ask, turned this film into something more boring than watching pumpkin seeds dry.