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March 22, 2012

Movie Review: The Wrong House (2010)

Directed by Shawn French

Starring Stacy Ann Strang, Brendan Potter and Sue Stevens

There are few things I like better then being pleasantly surprised while watching a movie. Before watching The Wrong House I did my customary IMDB check-in, user-rating...not good, reviews...not very nice, budget...ultra-low. Not expecting much, I popped in the DVD and ended up watching a pretty slick little indie horror movie.

Buy The Wrong House on DVD

The premise is very simple, five young friends are on a camping trip in the woods. After a night of partying one of kids, Donny ( Daniel Galloway) convinces the other four to follow him into the woods on what he calls, “An adventure”. After quite some time they end up on a road not far from an isolated house. Derek (Brendan Potter) and Kris (Stacy Ann Strang) stay behind to watch the road while Donny, Susan (Sue Stevens) and Steve (Shawn French) break into the house. It appears to be an easy mark, but what they don't realize is that the home owners have cameras installed everywhere and their identity is no longer a secret. While ransacking the house they steal a large jar of weed, various other drugs and some jewelry. After making their way back to camp they divvy up the loot and agree to return the following weekend to continue the party, all except for Donny, who has decided to stay behind and party alone. It isn't long before all the guilty party are getting creepy ultimatum's from the victims of the home invasion. In a nut-shell, give all of our shit back to us by Friday at 5 p.m. and all is forgiven, no questions asked. And if its not returned, well...

One of the reasons this movie really worked for me was the fact that as a kid I can remember our house getting broken into while we were on vacation. All of our favorite stuff was taken, bikes, the VCR, even our beloved Atari 2600. I can remember even as a 12 year old kid, I wanted blood. So a revenge movie based on a home invasion is something I can relate to, and apparently the same thing happened to the films creator, Shawn French. His incident was the inspiration for this movie.

I found myself secretly rooting for the crazy couple who has their shit stolen, they have captured and strung up Donny and are offering him a second chance if he only fesses up to the crime. But Donny is not a very smart kid, he thinks its cool to spit in their faces, that doesn't work out too well for him. And before he is chopped up into little bitty pieces he is given a lecture on Karma, and how it is akin to the law of averages, “You fuck with enough people and eventually you fuck with the wrong people.”

I wont spoil the rest of the story because its actually pretty good, not overly original but still well worth a watch. The Wrong House has a lot going for it, first off, the acting is surprisingly solid, top to bottom.

The story is fun, engaging and indulgent, the violence is pretty realistic (the gore, although on the light side is still passable). The pacing is excellent, there are no real lulls in this movie and there were some creepy moments when the homeowners are confronting the kids and offering to look the other way if they only return their drugs to them. I really couldn't find a single thing about this film that I didn't like, and for a $10,000 movie, that's a great achievement in my book. Two thumbs up for director/creator Shawn French, this is a truly solid indie horror movie with a moral to the story... Karma's a bitch.

6.8 out of 10 Reviewed by KennyB

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