Directed by: Stephen Cognetti
Written by: Stephen Cognetti
Starring: Danny Bellini. Gore Abrams, Adam Schneider, Ryan Jennifer and Jared Hacker
Short Film Review by: Rachel Pullen
Hell House LLC Movie Review
It’s that time of the week again, that time where, you, my loyal readers, gather around the campfire to hear my tales of gore, of blood and killers, of boobs and saucy teens…and most importantly, of horror gems that just may have slipped through the cracks unnoticed as Hollywood blinded us with yet another Annabelle or The Conjuring movie…sigh.
Talking of saturated film genres, remember the found footage surge after the popularity of The Blair Witch Project? Well surprise, surprise, it never died, it lays beneath the many, many sequels to the Paranormal Activity franchise, bringing us some of the best and most atmospheric additions to Horror that I have seen since the ’80s…yeah Friday the 13th was game-changing, fight me if you disagree.
Hell House LLC tells the story of a group of friends who decide to take over an abandoned hotel and turn it into one of those haunted houses, you know the ones that Americans just do way better than us Brits (our haunted house is just Judy Dench screaming at you and people putting gravy on pie and mash). They are super excited to make a lot of coin and scare some kids, and why not? That’s the point of Halloween, but little did they know that for all the spooky decorations they add to the house, there was already a portal to hell in the basement…that’s gonna play havoc with the insurance for the events.
While they are there lots of quite simple, but insanely scary things begin to happen, and I don’t mean stupid cups floating and doors closing slowly, more like a life-size clown mannequin moving from room to room, people being seen in the shadows, music plays when no one is at the piano. Yet, the team push on creating their haunted house…are they stupid or just really broke, who knows? Either way, as an audience we are being gifted some of the best slow-burn scares I have seen in a while!
Of course, the opening night does not go well at the haunted house, shiz goes actually ham and the gates of hell pop open in the basement and lots of cloaked people come out and start to do their killings. All of this is then revealed by the only survivor of the night, who is being interviewed throughout the film (there is this weird mockumentary-style police investigation spliced in which is after the event took place) by the authorities and she hands over a bag of tapes that the crew made during the construction of the haunt itself.
Reading that back Hell House LLC does not sound that exciting but hey that’s what I’m here to do, explain why it’s worth your viewing time…and trust me it really is. I watched this movie like five times in a week because I was like so into the clown…I mean the movie, yeah the movie.
Hell House LLC is a classic when it comes to its scares, this film uses no effects (thank god) it slow burns, and burns, and then that payoff is so worth it, is so spicy, you’re glad you stuck around.
It’s committed to not letting on entirely what’s going on in that basement, why there is a massive clown playing his own version of hide and seek with himself, why there are people in cloaks just kicking it in the background.
This film knows that it is a bit silly when it comes to the storyline, portal to hell in the basement? What? But it has the confidence to kick down the door and make us all swoon. And swoon I did like a lady who can only ride a horse side saddle style…taking on the old school vibes of scares straight from the Hitchcock era, and the found footage/mockumentary stylings from films such as REC and Paranormal Activity, Hell House LLC is something to digest for any fan of horror, heck, not even horror just get amongst it, because the lack of gore allows for accessibility to those not keen on typical scares, but the tension and build-up techniques can be valued by any die-hard thrill seeker.
Now in my traditional style, there are three of these movies in total (I’m a sucker for a franchise), and yes I will be doing them all because apparently they all relate and uncover the many ‘’onion’’ like layers that this film has, maybe we find out what the clown wants, that’s all I care about…I just assumed he was an Avon salesperson…buy my shower gel and get out…ahh good times.
Tune in next week for more...
Hotels that hate people...
Halloween teens being stupid and…
Clowns selling you sponges and pumice stones, what a thrill ride it will be.