Hell is Where the Home is Movie Review
Written by Joel Harley
Released by 1inMM Productions
Directed by Orson Oblowitz
Written by Corey Deshon
2018, 88 minutes, Rated 18
Released on 28th August 2018
Angela Trimbur as Sarah
Zach Avery as Joseph
Janel Parrish as Estelle
Jonathan Howard as Victor
Two couples, both harboring dark secrets. One luxury, remote house. A jittery stranger at the door, acting suspiciously. Orson Oblowitz’s home invasion thriller (or is it?) boasts a familiar setup and, sure enough for everybody involved, very bad things are on the horizon. Unlike most budget horror directors of his ilk, however, Oblowitz is committed to keeping his audience guessing, and things are rarely as they seem at first… or are they?
Following the loss of an unborn child, Sarah and Joseph have grown bitter, sad and distant. Hoping to bond again, they rent out a fancy home in the Mojave Desert, with pals Estelle and Victor. With steamy affairs and Victor’s hot temper all simmering away under the surface, there’s enough bubbling away in the pot well before creepy ‘neighbour’ Fairuza Balk comes knocking at the door. With friends and neighbours like these, who needs violent home invaders?
The snappily titled Hell is Where the Home is may not be the most original home invasion film you’ll see this year (or ever), but it is one which will keep you on your toes throughout. While its lead couples are predictably obnoxious, that’s sort of the point, and feeds into the later atrocities quite nicely. While Oblowitz’s box of tricks is a familiar one, the way in which he sets it up and unleashes his funny games makes all of this feel much fresher than it really is. It’s nasty, unpredictable and harbors some of the most brutally effective home invasion violence since 2010’s Mother’s Day remake.
At this point, it’s difficult to do anything startlingly original with the home invasion subgenre (Pascal Laugier’s Incident in a Ghostland gave it a shot, but was marred by misogyny and banal violence-for-violence’s-sake), and Hell is Where the Home is barely even tries. Instead, rather than reinventing the wheel, it sets it spinning down a dark path and never takes its foot off the pedal until the end.