The Houses October Built (2014)   2 comments



Five people we don’t care too much about travel around Texas and Louisiana in a camper looking for the ultimate in haunted house attractions.  This found footage film chronicles a few days in the lives of these old friends who tell us absolutely nothing about themselves.  We know one of them dropped out of film school and that they seem to have an endless supply of cameras.  We know they eat junk food and are completely unprepared to deal with the low-life weirdos they meet on the road.  We know they’re not too bright.

“Got any gum?”

Director Bobby Roe uses the shaky-cam technique and there are quite a few jump scares.  He also intersperses the story with interviews of haunted house employees and owners who describe how they’ll do anything short of murder to scare people.  Lovely.  That part was interesting, at least.

Trick or treat!

THE HOUSES OCTOBER BUILT did scare me.  It made me feel uncomfortable and annoyed.  I was worried that it might descend into I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE territory.  It had that vibe.  I was also bugged that the five main characters had so little sense.  Even after it became clear that they were in way over their heads, they insisted on looking for more sketchy haunts.  It’s hard to empathize with people you know so little about who compound each stupid move with another, stupider one.  I’d skip it.  Also, clowns.  Waaaaaay too many clowns.  That has to stop.

“Honey, the Welcome Wagon’s here!”


2 responses to “The Houses October Built (2014)

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  1. I’m really enjoying these reviews, thank you for the work and for sharing them! With one exception, you’ve selected films I have never seen so this is turning into an excellent guide for the ones I will try to find first, and the ones to take a pass on. The Spartan way you summarize the film overall, and the deft parsing of good/bad elements is very refreshing and lots of fun. And you bring smiles. When describing the vict—erm, heroes…of this film, the description of losing sight of them as characters to root for when their stupid decisions begin to compound interest made me chuckle. You’re like the Lifeguard, blowing your whistle as a character does yet another unwise thing (and without any brighter of his/her friends slapping them in an effort to change brain gears) and calling out, “OK, that’s it! Everyone…out of the gene pool!”

    • Haha thanks! What a lovely thing to say. I’m glad you’re enjoying reading these as much as I am writing them. Everyone out of the gene pool. That’s great. Some of these characters are definitely swimming in the shallow end. Again, thank you!

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