The Movie Waffler New Release Review (VOD) - DEAD HOUSE | The Movie Waffler

New Release Review (VOD) - DEAD HOUSE

dead house movie review
Three home invaders run into a horde of zombies.

Review by Sue Finn

Directed by: Brini Amerigo

Starring: Danny Cutler, Alex Lucchesi, Alex Southern, Kate Davies-Speak

dead house movie poster

What do you do when a home invasion story just doesn’t seem like enough of a ‘hook’ for you? Well if you’re writer director Amerigo Brini you add zombies into the mix, stir it up and hope it rises!

Beginning with a nasty but rather unconvincing home invasion and multiple murder that features way too many unnecessary boob close ups, we then segue into one of the murderers' ‘soulful’ musings on the nature of love... it seems we have a philosophical killer in Nibbio (Danny Cutler).

His two henchmen consist of the truly disgusting and reprehensible Testamento (Alex Lucchesi) and the obviously-uncomfortable-and-going-to-turn-coat-at-some-stage troubled brother Brett (Alex Southern).

During the murder, just to add shock value, Testamento ejaculates onto the crime scene; I’m pretty sure a career criminal like that would know better than to leave DNA all over the body of the teenager he just killed.

We are treated to a random scene of a creature attacking a woman in a shower of silly blood and gore before we move onto the meat of the story.

dead house movie

A father, John (David White), comes home to his son Mikey who is clearly lacking fatherly quality time; dad then promptly leches all over his wife Elena (Kate Davies-Speak), telling his young son he wants mummy to go to the bedroom with him - talk about wildly inappropriate.

An exposition heavy talk with his older son, Paul (James Wiles), reveals that dad is a scientist who’s taking bribes from Americans. Their communication apparently just consists of telling each other what they already know in whiny voices.

The home invaders are watching from the outside ready to pounce while inside it’s all supposedly ‘happy families’.

There’s a strange muted argument between mum and dad in the bedroom right next door to their youngest son's bedroom - why they don’t just talk in another room where they won’t have to whisper is beyond me.

Just in case we missed it when it was underlined earlier, mum makes sure to bring up again how dad doesn’t spend enough time with the kids.

dead house movie

Dad then chooses to go down to the lab and inspect his work, which looks for all intents and purposes like an old PC with dodgy graphics on it.

On his return upstairs dad declares that dinner was a disaster (not that I could see...?) and so maybe it’s time for family film night... which, of course, is violently interrupted by those invaders.

There is a humiliating discussion about oral sex that seems to last forever and is more than unpleasant to watch.

Nibbio’s ulterior motive is a desire to have his victims share their secrets and mum pulls out a whopper though it doesn’t appear to have the effect the invaders were hoping for, and they feel the need to up the atrocities inflicted on the family.

In a plot twist, it seems dad has been developing zombies in his basement lab (the creature we saw earlier eating a victim) and they’ve escaped.

All hell breaks loose, literally; and now they are all prospective victims.

The final fate of mum, which had potential to be grim and chilling, was ruined by the filmmaker’s penchant for over the top gore. It’s a shame, as this would have had a far deeper impact if there had been some restraint exercised; instead it becomes almost laughable.

dead house movie

There is also a downbeat last shot and a predictable post titles coda.

Hardman Nibbio, all gravelly voice and thick necked brutality, spouts sexist claptrap about love and women, and I assume is the human representative of the film's intended subtext; but he fails to pull together such an unwieldy and derivative plot and give it meaning.

The practical effects are impressive and deserve a better movie than this one.

It’s a decent kernel of an idea; with a tighter, more focused script and a clearer perspective (and more gore-control) this could have been very good, but alas it falters in all departments.

This film lacks focus and purpose, directed in a ‘point and shoot’ shoddy manner that often shaves off the tops of heads etc.; it's poorly scripted with some truly unbelievable dialogue and treats rape as a plot point with no after effects; and it’s exploitive with no deeper meaning to justify its revelling in meaningless violence.

Dead House is loud, mean spirited, ugly, badly acted and boring.

The tagline asks ‘Who is the real monster?’ – I’d say this movie is.

Dead House is on VOD now.