(Hi! I’m currently cleaning out my DVR and, though I’m making some progress, I’ve still got over 150 movies left to watch and review! Will I finish before the world ends in November? Who knows!? Anyway, I recorded Dream House Nightmare off of the Lifetime Movie Network on April 2nd.)
I got really excited when Dream House Nightmare started and I saw those three magic words: “The Asylum Presents.”
“Oh, Hell yeah!” I shouted. “An Asylum film!”
See, whenever I see “The Asylum Presents,” I know that the film that follows is going to be a lot of fun. The Asylum is shameless about being over the top entertainment. There is rarely anything subtle about an Asylum film but that’s exactly why people like me love them. The Asylum has turned melodrama into an art form.
The other reason that I got excited about Dream House Nightmare was, from the opening shots, it was obvious that the film was set and shot in Louisiana. Seriously, an Asylum film shot in the Deep South? You better believe I was excited!
And, for the most part, Dream House Nightmare lived up to my expectations. It tells the story of a house, a really big house that practically anyone would die for. Madison Dupree (Terese Aiello) loves the house and would love to buy it. When she sees another couple looking at the house, she even tells them not to bother. She has determined that the house is going to belong to her. Can you blame her? She doesn’t have much else going on in her life. Years ago, she was named Mother of the Year but now, she has been relegated to the margins of society. She lives with her disabled daughter (Tenea Intriago, giving a poignant performance in a difficult role) and her white trash husband (Brett Baker). Why can’t she at least have a nice house?
However, she doesn’t get the house. A better offer is made by the Wades, Thom (David A. Cole) and his wife, Theresa (Rachel G. Whittle). Thom is an emergency room doctor. Theresa is pregnant and is often alone at home while her husband works at the hospital. Theresa has already suffered one miscarriage and is understandably worried that she’ll have another. It doesn’t help that the neighbors all think that she’s stand-offish. (“I’m just shy!” she protests and believe me, as someone who has often been wrongly accused of having an attitude, I knew exactly what she was going through.)
It also doesn’t help that Madison is batshit insane, so insane that she immediately launches a campaign of harassment against the Wades. She leaves threatening notes. She goes online and announces that the Wades are having an open house, which leads to a few surprise visitors. She leaves notes for the other neighbors, making Thom look like a pervert. When Thom and Theresa hold a party to get to know their neighbors, Madison attempts to blow everyone up.
It’s just all so over-the-top and insane that it’s impossible not to enjoy. The plot doesn’t have to make sense when it’s this much fun. It seems somehow appropriate that the film takes place in the Deep South. Down here, we embrace our melodrama. This film is a potent combination of Louisiana atmosphere and Asylum melodrama, with a healthy amount of random insanity tossed into the mix.
As I said, I’m always happy when I see “The Asylum Presents.” Films like this are the reason why.