(Lisa is currently in the process of trying to clean out her DVR by watching and reviewing all 40 of the movies that she recorded from the start of March to the end of June. She’s trying to get it all done by July 10th! Will she make it!? Keep visiting the site to find out!)
The 18th film on the DVR was the Lifetime original movie, House of Darkness.
House of Darkness is a film that asks a question that I’m sure we have all asked ourselves at least once: “What if Lifetime made a horror film? What would that be like?”
Well, apparently, it would be like every single horror film that you’ve ever seen. There is not a single cliché that does not show up in House of Darkness. It starts out with the promise that we are about see a true story and hey, maybe it was! After all, the film reminded me of a lot of other horrors film — Amityville, Paranormal Activity, and others — that were supposedly based on true stories.
Kelly (Sara Fletcher) and Brian (Gunner Wright) are a married couple but they are also a Lifetime couple, which means that their marriage is in trouble! Brian is a carpenter who has a difficult time opening up emotionally. Kelly is a massage therapist, which Brian appears to think is the equivalent of working in a brothel. How bad is their marriage? When Brian sees Kelly wearing sexy lingerie in an effort to liven things up, he responds by going out to the garage.
Fortunately, Brian and Kelly have been seeing a marriage counselor. The counselor suggests that they both start keeping a video diary, which allows the film to occasionally so some found footage shots. (That’s the Paranormal Activity influence.) If the video diaries don’t help, maybe moving to a new house in San Francisco will do the trick!
And you know what? It’s a great house but the owners didn’t want much money for it. It’s almost as if they were trying to get rid of the house. I wonder what that could mean!
Anyway, Kelly and Brian’s daughter is soon wandering around, speaking in a demonic voice while giving everyone Hillary Clinton-style death glares, and encouraging her friends to wander into the basement. Meanwhile, Brian is acting even weirder and suddenly, it’s like he can’t go anywhere without bringing an axe with him!
And then there’s the neighbors. A sexy woman and a superhot man occasionally appear standing in front of the house across the road. The woman smiles at Brian, tempting him to … to do what? I guess that the idea here is to encourage Brian to start doing his Jack Nicholson impersonation but I wasn’t sure. I suspect, to a certain extent, that the ghosts and the evil spirits and whatever the Hell is in the house don’t really have any goals beyond doing the usual horror stuff. They probably said, “Look! A stationary camera! Let’s go knock shit around!”
Anyway, House of Darkness is pretty much just a festival of nonstop clichés and scenes lifted from other horror films. It’s never really scary, largely because it’s a made-for-TV movie and, since it’s Lifetime, you know that it’s not going to be disturbing or graphic like The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones. Without any intentional humor or unexpected scares, House of Darkness is largely forgettable.