House (1977)

★★★★

Nobuhiko Obayashi’s House does haunted house movies right. In this mix of comedy and horror, nothing is too far-fetched. It is a tough film to write about because it is difficult to all take in. In one scene a skeleton is dancing then in another scene, a man transforms into bananas. What can be said but, House is one hell of a ride and one up’s itself with every scene.

Some of the effects in House look intentionally cheesy. The intention by Obayashi was to make the film’s effects look almost childish. This adds to the effect and tone of the movie. As this is not fully horror, but a farce as well. This film definitely has surrealist comedy elements. As shown through the bizarre practical effects and the various scenes in the haunted house.

Where the film is lacking is in the acting department. Many of the actresses had never had acting experience before, so it is excusable to an extent and the characters are playing exaggerated versions of various character archetypes so it does not get in they way all too much. I think the tongue-in-cheek way the seven girls’ names (Melody, Kung Fu, Gorgeous etc.) also defined their characterization was quite humorous.

House, is a fabulously unique take on the haunted house. There is never a dull moment in this 88-minute film as everything builds up to its grand finale of chaos.

Hoop-Tober Film #3 of 35

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