A disturbed young man who was burned as a child by his sadistic mother stalks women with a flamethrower.A disturbed young man who was burned as a child by his sadistic mother stalks women with a flamethrower.A disturbed young man who was burned as a child by his sadistic mother stalks women with a flamethrower.
The negativity towards DON'T GO IN THE HOUSE is odd. Yes, there is ONE moment where it's particularly gruesome and lurid but I've seen mainstream movies (LETHAL WEAPON 2 or TOTAL RECALL) where the super violent action was more nauseating to me than an entire film like DGITH. I suspect that a lot it has to do with the fact that DGITH is a low budget movie, with unknowns and made by unknowns, and those suffering from an elitist complex will renege anything if it doesn't look a certain way or stand-up to their (prefab) expectations. The great thing about DGITH is that it doesn't gloss over the violence. The film is grim, dour and depressing, as it SHOULD be.
Another notch against DGITH is that the story follows the depressing actions of the killer, who's the only main character of the film. And like so many horror films with the main character being the killer himself, few people identify with (or what to identify with) the killer, and because of this knee-jerk reaction towards the way the film portrays the killer, many dismissed it without even trying to see it for what it is. Ironically, the film is dismissed for what it is (and isn't) as much as the character it portrays is dismissed in reality for who he is. Oddly enough, I thought his friend was more annoying than the killer himself.
DGITH is not the greatest movie ever made. But it does what it intended to do: it unsettles and it's grim and unpleasant, with its post-Vietnam war tone. There's NO black humour in the film, and a lot of films these days like to include touches of black comedy here and there in serial killer stories. But I'm glad there aren't any touches of black comedy in DGITH. Its straightforwardness is actually what sets it apart from most films of its kind.
The only big mistake in the film is the tacky "surprise" ending that has nothing to do with the rest of the movie. Otherwise, the film is solid and packs a mean punch. And I dig that disco music!
So, if you don't like your horror movies with a depressive tone. If you don't like movies that don't look splashy or stylized, then DON'T GO IN THE HOUSE is not a movie for you. Personally, I think it's light years better than the overrated MANIAC (1980).
- Jun 26, 2003