Fears of parenthood and the corruption of the female body come to the fore in Nicolas McCarthy’s supernatural chiller, Home. When real estate agent Leigh goes to assess a property that has just come onto the market in the highly sought Greenville area, little does she know the appalling evil she is allowing to enter her life, and it’s horrific ramifications. For this house is haunted by something beyond understanding; it is connected to a series of mysterious incidents, which involve a girl in a red coat, a tragic death, and a macabre, demonic deal. To say any more about the plot of the film would ruin one of the elements that makes Home such a surprising film.

This is a film with some truly effective twists that pull the film in directions that increase the suspense and allows McCarthy to steadily lead into greater moments of horror. Indeed, the gripping tension born of this sense of misdirection and endless possibility allows for some memorable jump scares, exquisitely honed for maximum effect, in particular born of McCarthy’s use of reflective surfaces as a layering of the horror. If you are a fan of jumping out of your seat (and which horror fan isn’t?!), Home already has something for you. Another crucial element at the heart of the film’s success is the building of tension through sound design; the film is dominated by a use of pounding and pulsing sounds, deep and brooding, both in the score and used incidentally. The effect of these sounds creates an added layer of fear; sound reflects the growing presence of evil, the demon increasing in strength and influence.

Of course, the possibilities the film sets up does come to haunt it; for a film so full of ideas, it isn’t perhaps visually dynamic enough, it’s blurring of reality and the supernatural coming across as unfortunately sterile, rather than discomforting. Furthermore, the finale is disappointing considering the ideas at play and the potential for something truly horrifying to immerge. Ultimately, it feels like an obvious and almost illogical conclusion.

Home is a quietly effective example of demonic horror, but perhaps it is too quiet for its own good (jumps aside of course). It lacks the depth, the complexity of ideas, and the finesse to push into the realms of classic supernatural horror such as Rosemary’s Baby, which shares some of Home’s fears. However, while it lacks the edge and quality, it certainly is full of an intensity that surprises and while not separates it from the pack, makes it an enjoyable and affective little horror.

 

VERDICT: [rating=3]

About The Author

Matthew Hammond is a full time cinephile, specializing in cult, art house and 1980’s cinema. While film is his overwhelming passion, Matthew has been known to enjoy comic books, Sherlock Holmes stories and a good film related T-shirt. Feel free to email me with any questions or comments: mattpaul61@o2.co.uk