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Silent House | The Clapper Bored

Silent House

Elizabeth Olsen is so hot right now. Her turn in Martha Marcy May Marlene was revelatory, displaying superior talents to her more famous sisters. Coming up is a starring role in Josh Radnor’s Liberal Arts; a twee comedy that got rave reviews at Sundance. In between was Silent House, a remake of a Uruguayan horror movie that only came out in 2010. The catch of that movie was that it was designed to look like it had been shot in one continuous take. That was the interesting thing about the movie, not the plot. So the American remake is essentially recycling a filmmaking technique rather than rebuilding a particularly interesting or exciting plot.

So other than the fact that it looks like one continuous take, the film is about a youngish girl (Elizabeth Olsen) who is living with her dad and uncle in a house that is in need of serious rebuilding. The one other clever conceit is that, despite the fact the movie takes place during the day, all of the house’s windows are boarded up and therefore the house is bathed in total darkness. So, once Elizabeth Olsen starts hearing noises, we’re treated to a journey round a dark house, illuminated only by oil lamps and flashlights.

Yadda yadda. It’s only 80-odd minutes long but it starts to drag as we go from one low-budget shock to another. And the conclusion is so bafflingly under explained (like each and every character and their motivations) that it’s very hard to come away with any sort of serious memory of the film that doesn’t involve Elizabeth Olsen’s cleavage. In fact, I was more shocked when it was revealed, during the credits, that the uncle wasn’t played by Alan Tudyk than I was at any point during the movie.

Despite being a very short movie it’s a pointless remake and a waste of your cinema-going time.

Title: Silent House
Director(s): Chris Kentis, Laura Lau
Starring: Elizabeth Olsen and a man who looks like Alan Tudyk
Running Time: 88 minutes of pretend single take
Certificate: 15

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