Film Review: House of Darkness

Kate Bosworth

When it comes to identifying the problem, more often than not the answer is ‘men’. Whether that question is around safety on the streets, sexual assault, harassment in the workplace or a myriad of other things. There’s an entitlement which often follows us around, backed up by the physicality which usually comes with being born male. It could, quite reasonably, be argued that the world would be a better place without us. House of Darkness tackles the problem in an unusual way.

Hap (Justin Long) is having a great night so far. After a long day at work, he went to a bar to unwind and have a few drinks. This is where he met the beautiful Mina (Kate Bosworth). After driving her home in the middle of nowhere, it seems like his luck might be in. When he’s invited in for a night cap, much to his delight, Hap discovers she’s alone in a vast house. Everything is going well, but he starts to get an inkling that all is not what it seems.

While genre cinema is not always renowned for its acting or well-written dialogue, this is where House of Darkness excels. It’s fascinating because the repartee between the characters is so sharply and smartly penned. Writer/Director Neil LaBute plays with a number of social issues without ever resorting to dogma or hectoring. Instead, House of Darkness is a clever comedy drama wrapped within the trappings of a horror film.

House of Darkness is out in US theatres on 9 September, followed by a digital and on demand release on 13 September.

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