The Movie Waffler New Release Review [VOD] - THIS IS OUR HOME | The Movie Waffler

New Release Review [VOD] - THIS IS OUR HOME

this is our home review
A mysterious child enters the lives of a young couple who recently lost their own unborn child.

Review by Sue Finn

Directed by: Omri Dorani

Starring: Simone Policano, Jeff Ayars, Drew Beckas, Riggsby Lane, Omer Rosen

this is our home poster

Cory and Reina appear to be the perfect couple. We initially meet them eagerly anticipating the birth of their first child; and as they lovingly bandy about names, laughing and joyous, you can’t help but feel that their ideal is likely to be short lived.

Fast forward to sometime in the future and they are on a road trip to her childhood home; sad faced flashbacks and a lack of swelling belly seemingly indicate the loss of the pregnancy.

After one particularly heated episode of bickering over a flat tire, during which Cory has a mantrum and throws the tyre iron into the woods, two intimidating strangers appear behind their disabled car to lend a hand with a side dose of menace. It’s an anxiety-inducing scene that appears to be leading the film in a certain direction; but this film is the antithesis of predictable.

this is our home review

They arrive at her parents' lodge for a weekend of bonding, but there is tension between them that erupts into fiery arguments over literally nothing. Grief has hurt their communication and they are struggling to find a way back to each other.

A medical student, she practices brain surgery on a steak that Cory lays across his forehead – this is a game she enjoys and which he indulges.

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When a strange and troubled kid shows up on their doorstep in the middle of the night claiming the name Reina had chosen for their lost unborn child (Zeke), his presence burns a fissure between Rae and Cory. He refers to them as mummy and daddy from the get go and though she resists at first, Reina’s longing for the child she lost is such that she fully embraces the role of mummy within a short amount of time. Cory on the other hand, wrestles with being called daddy by this stranger, and slowly finds himself on the outside of this newly formed family.

this is our home review

After some midnight playing, Zeke introduces Reina to "the deep room," and everything changes.

As Cory, Jeff Ayars is the audience's voice of reason when things seem to be going crazy, and he manages to convey that sense of unreality well. Simone Policano plays Reina, who goes through the gamut of emotions and never falters; her implacable face at the resolution is haunting.

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Zeke (a fearless Drew Beckas) is creepy in a way I’ve never seen a child be in a horror film. Unpredictable, odd and yet never feeling like a creation of the screenwriters, he is written as a child and not a child reciting adult words for extra scares.

Writer/director Omri Dorani, with the wonderful work of cinematographer Thomas Taugher (who lensed the excellent Fruitvale Station), has created a compulsively watchable film here; I loved the tableau scenes, the music choices, the long takes and quick cuts, the silences.

this is our home review

Scriptwise, this movie feels random and fascinating and natural, full of hints and symbolism. I particularly appreciated the secret of how the pregnancy was lost eked out in half-glimpsed flashes, and Reina’s anger and resentment possibly manifesting themselves in physical ways.

I’m excited by this filmmaker. He has given this film a unique and stylised feel that is a breath of fresh air. It has a wacky structure that raises many, many questions it doesn’t answer. It’s unconventional in every sense of the word and that was actually just fine with me.

I may not have understood all that I saw, but I certainly liked it all.

This Is Our Home is on VOD now.

2020 film reviews