Hell House

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Generally favorable reviews - based on 7 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: This documentary profiles a Pentecostal church in Texas that uses a Halloween haunted house, complete with fire and brimstone, to scare teenagers about issues such as AIDS, abortion and school shootings.


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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. The result is a lively, insightful look at multiple levels of self-delusion among people who truly believe their Halloween funhouse is making our fallen world a better place.
  2. Scary, all right, but not for the reasons the Dallas church had in mind.
  3. 75
    The scariest revelation in Ratliff's film is that the Texas Hell House has proved so popular that it's being copied all over the country. Heaven help us!
  4. Reviewed by: Dennis Harvey
    Hell House is a slice of contempo life many viewers will find bizarre and disturbing, not necessarily in the precautionary-moral way its subjects intend. Briskly paced docu is well handled in tech departments.
  5. For anyone unfamiliar with pentacostal practices in general and theatrical phenomenon of Hell Houses in particular, it's an eye-opener.
  6. 50
    As a director, Mr. Ratliff wisely rejects the temptation to make fun of his subjects, most of whom seem to believe sincerely that they are doing the work of God.
  7. 50
    Lookin' for sin, American-style? Try Hell House, which documents the cautionary Christian spook-a-rama of the same name.
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