Critic Reviews



Based on 19 critic reviews provided by
Despite an intriguing setup, sharply drawn central characters and a lead performance from the luminous Jennifer Lawrence that elevates the material a few notches, House at the End of the Street is a by-the-book horror thriller that's low on scares and suspense.
Yes, there are the requisite jump-in-your-seat scares, many of them false alarms, and it all plays out basically exactly like any other horror movie, but Lawrence does elevate the proceedings.
I doubt that Lawrence is conscious of this process. Nevertheless, stuck in a dull commercial feature, a very good actor happens upon a new solution to an age-old problem: She improves the script by transcending it, and steals the picture by abandoning it.
This PG-13 scare-fest is more psychological terror than blood and guts, and should satisfy-not repulse-young genre fans.
We will simply be grateful she (Lawrence) is here, and thus able to turn generic junk into mildly interesting junk.
A few old favourites - like the inconveniently wonky torch and the probably-not-quite-killed maniac - deliver the required jolts, but early promise dwindles to hokum.
Sadly, any hopes Mark Tonderai's US follow-up to 2008's "Hush" could have some "Cabin In The Woods"-style surprises up its sleeve are swiftly dashed as its talented lead is reduced to being just another scantily clad babe getting stalked by a psycho.
Most of the comedy, however, is unintentional. House At The End of the Street may not draw much of an audience during its initial run, but the movie's preposterousness certifies it for future midnight screenings, where the story will get the jeering it deserves.
Lawrence's natural, disarming screen presence is ill-suited to something as mannered and labored as House at the End of the Street, and at moments it's as if she freezes up, unable to simply throw on a scared-face for no good reason.
The film is essentially toothless, but it never stoops to humorless torture-porn theatrics.
This is a terrible little movie even by the standards of the genre.
This is the rare horror film so bad that you almost wish it had turned into a good old connect-the-gory-dots slasher movie. The only mystery at work is how Lawrence's agent ever let her sign on to this.

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