A young girl's husband rents a lovely home just outside of Madrid so she can spend the last three months of her pregnancy in peace and luxury. Unfortunately, just as they arrive at the home... See full summary »
A young girl's husband rents a lovely home just outside of Madrid so she can spend the last three months of her pregnancy in peace and luxury. Unfortunately, just as they arrive at the home, the girl realizes that it is the place where she had secretly had an illegal abortion some years before. The clinic is long-gone, but this doesn't ease the woman's disquiet. Things get even worse when she learns that her upstairs neighbor is the old abortionist's assistant. Written by
Tedium reigns supreme in a house on the outskirts of Madrid
Spain will be remembered by many film fans for a lot of very good horror movies and thrillers; but unfortunately many Spanish directors go overboard with the idea of 'slow burn' and tedium becomes the end result - and that unfortunately is the case with this film. That House in the Outskirts takes slow burn to the extreme and essentially nothing happens for the entire running time. The script is the main problem as it's trite and doesn't do much at all in the way of progressing the story or providing dialogue with enough about it to make any of the characters interesting. The story focuses on a husband and wife who rent an old isolated house outside of Madrid so the wife can relax while she is pregnant. However, luck would have it that the house they rent just happens to be the same house that was once a private clinic where the wife went for an illegal abortion years earlier. Naturally, the house brings back bad memories, and the upstairs neighbour just happens to have been the abortionist's assistant...
The plot does not sound particularly interesting on its own; but the idea of pregnancy and abortion has lead to horrifying films before (most recently with French horror 'Inside') and I was hoping that might create some interest. It really doesn't. The film can't even be called a thriller as it doesn't 'thrill' in any way, shape or form and fails at being anything other than a cure for insomnia. It has to be said that it is rather well made; director Eugenio Martín lays the atmosphere on thick and the acting is rather good; but it means nothing when the film is so painful to sit through. Alida Valli (whom cult fans will recognise as Suspiria's Miss Tanner) is the pick of the performers and actually provides the film with one of its only plus points. It soon becomes clear that the ending is not going to provide anything of interest; and indeed that is the case. I can only imagine the high ratings this film has received is down to the fact that it's an arty and obscure; but don't be taken in by it. That House in the Outskirts is definitely not worth the trouble of tracking it down!
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