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73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 64 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Sam is a pretty college sophomore, so desperate to earn some cash for a deposit on an apartment that she accepts a babysitting job even after she finds out there is no baby. Mr. and Mrs. Ulman are the older couple who lure Sam out to their creeky Victorian mansion deep in the woods, just inSam is a pretty college sophomore, so desperate to earn some cash for a deposit on an apartment that she accepts a babysitting job even after she finds out there is no baby. Mr. and Mrs. Ulman are the older couple who lure Sam out to their creeky Victorian mansion deep in the woods, just in time for a total lunar eclipse. Megan is Sam’s best friend, who gives her a ride out to the house, and reluctantly leaves her there despite suspecting that something is amiss. Victor at first seems like just a creepy guy lurking around the house, but quickly makes it clear that Sam will end this night in a bloody fight for her life. (Magnolia Pictures) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. It is a fine little old-school thriller.
  2. 83
    If nothing else, Ti West’s retro “Satan rules!” thriller The House Of The Devil gets the look and tone of early-’80s horror schlock exactly right.
  3. Reviewed by: Andy Klein
    80
    The buildup is undeniably effective; for most of the movie, it provides the same kind of thrills as "Paranormal Activity," if somewhat less brilliantly.
  4. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    75
    An almost fetishistic re-creation of a horror-suspense movie from around 1978.
  5. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    70
    Pumping the audience with inhale-exhale zooms and out-of-the-way close-ups, director Ti West's ratcheting of suspense in this alone-in-an-empty-house tale is proficient, if not psychologically piercing, in the best "Let's Scare Jessica to Death" fashion.
  6. Writer and director Ti West accesses all the hot buttons for fans of the genre in a manner that doesn't make fun of it (and its followers) in a "Scary Movie" way, but instead treats it with the appropriate amount of respect. (Key word: appropriate.)
  7. This is the perfect illustration of the banality of most scare movies.

See all 18 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 17
  2. Negative: 4 out of 17
  1. TarekM.
    Jan 1, 2010
    10
    Finally a correct homage to the 80's horror flicks without any stupid quotes or irony. Rock on Ti West!
  2. PaulD
    Dec 3, 2009
    9
    This movie is awesome. Rarely are horror movies crafted with such obvious care and attention. It relies on pacing and quality rather than This movie is awesome. Rarely are horror movies crafted with such obvious care and attention. It relies on pacing and quality rather than in-your-face relentless violence or cliche shocks. One of the best horror movies of the decade. Expand
  3. Apr 3, 2015
    9
    Having heard only good things about this movie from critics and fans, I had to check it out. I gotta say, it certainly didn't disappoint me!Having heard only good things about this movie from critics and fans, I had to check it out. I gotta say, it certainly didn't disappoint me! The House of the Devil is essentially an 80's movie that was released in 2009. It has all the zoom shots, freeze frames, occult themes, and blood that you'd expect from one while not succumbing to the cheap jump scares and bad CGI that's present in many of today's horror films. The movie is about a college student who takes a babysitting job during a lunar eclipse. However, instead of taking care of children, she has to take care of this mysterious old woman who never leaves her room. The dark house, her employers' odd behavior, and this strange woman upstairs adds a layer of mystery to the film, but that mystery can only go on so long until it becomes boring. The slow middle act is only a distraction for what is to come, however, and the film takes a complete 180 into its third act and becomes a bloody, scary, and intense film that kept me gripping my seat for the final 30 minutes. It's on Netflix if you're interested. Expand
  4. JT
    Dec 12, 2009
    6
    The plot for this film has been done a million times (or is it two million?). But the thing that gives it an edge is that the characters are The plot for this film has been done a million times (or is it two million?). But the thing that gives it an edge is that the characters are smart & realistic, aspects which are usually tossed aside in 99% of other horror films. Expand
  5. Dec 10, 2011
    4
    It does indeed build an intensity via nostalgic 80's occult angst but it drags out for far too long for so little reward. The leading ladyIt does indeed build an intensity via nostalgic 80's occult angst but it drags out for far too long for so little reward. The leading lady performance is plausible but she cannot single handedly float the film out of it's disappointing anti-climax. It does have that one good 'jump' moment worth missed heartbeat or two. Expand
  6. DanielP.
    Nov 1, 2009
    4
    I liked the stylish retro feel of the movie but that was all that I liked. All but the last 20 min of the movie were a bad attempt on subtle I liked the stylish retro feel of the movie but that was all that I liked. All but the last 20 min of the movie were a bad attempt on subtle suspense (I was just bored). Just as the film started getting good... it was over. Expand
  7. zach
    Feb 10, 2010
    0
    The last 10 minutes are just horror cliches. Once the ritual took place i predicted exactly what would happen utterlly horrible no reedeming The last 10 minutes are just horror cliches. Once the ritual took place i predicted exactly what would happen utterlly horrible no reedeming qualities what so ever. Expand

See all 17 User Reviews

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