Day 16: Before “Evil Dead II”, there was “House”, Nobuhiko Obayashi’s fever dream from 1977. Despite some inspiration from Japanese Kwaidan folklore like vengeful spirits that devour the living and an eerie, haunted abode, this is definitely not your typical horror film. Drawing on the influence of his daughter’s creative imagination, Nobuhiko masterfully crafted a colorful, surreal, and terrifying coming-of-age story loaded childhood fears and over the top, intended campiness. While it fared well with younger audiences, it was derided by critics and Toho film company upon its release. The film was only officially released in the United States in the late 2000s when Janus Films bought the rights.
... The film follows a group of teenage schoolgirls traveling to a remote house in the Japanese countryside. The owner of the home is a vengeful demon disguised as the aunt of Gorgeous, the lead female protagonist. What starts off as a warm family reunion quickly devolves into something out of a nightmare - a cartoon cats jump out of paintings and spews gallons upon gallons of blood; a decapitated head floats out of a well and bites one of the girls; a girl’s reflection in the mirror attacks; a toy skeleton dances while a piano satiates its appetite for human flesh. The special effects are wild and in stark contrast with the elaborate set pieces and beautiful matte paintings. The storyline is pretty simple, but the phenomenal editing might make first-time viewers want to take a Xanax. Reading about the film and watching it are two whole different experiences - I suggest you do the latter right now. Who needs drugs when you have “House”? #hausu #house1977 #criterioncollection #japanesehorror #janusfilms #31daysofhalloween #horror #horrormovies #cultfilm #kwaidan #ghosts
Ladson, South Carolina