Saturday, October 4, 2014

The Last House on the Left (2009)

Director: Dennis Lliadis

Writers: Adam Alleca, Carl Ellsworth, Wes Craven

Composer: John Murphy

Starring: Garret Dillahunt, Michael Bowen, Josh Coxx, Riki Lindhome, Aaron Paul, Sara Paxton, Monica Potter, Tony Goldwyn, Martha MacIsaac, Spencer Treat Clark, Usha Khan

More info: IMDb

Tagline: If bad people hurt someone you love, how far would you go to hurt them back?

Plot: After kidnapping and brutally assaulting two young women, a gang unknowingly finds refuge at a vacation home belonging to the parents of one of the victims.

My rating: 7/10

Will I watch it again? Probably.

Say it ain't so!  They actually improved on the classic original THE LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT (1972).  I liked the first one but it's not great.  Now had I seen it for the first time in '72 I might be singing a different tune because I'm sure it caused quite a stir with audiences.  Some of the things I liked about the first one are absent in this remake but this new one does a good job of giving us a better setup I think.  I don't like how a certain someone survives but they made it work for this one.  The cast does a fine job (it was cool seeing Michael Bowen and Aaron Paul (Paul especially as a bad guy)) and John Murphy's score was very good.  After you think it's over you get a little bit of business with one of the parents and one of the bad guys.  At first I thought it was cool as shit until you see what he's going to do to him and then it makes a right turn into Stupidsville.  It's a good horror film and I'm kind of surprised by it.  No jump scares that I can recall.  That's a fucking rarity these days. It's one of the better and smarter films of this type to come along in the past few years.  The funny thing, though, is I think I'll watch the original more before I'd revisit this one.  That might change for me in 30 years but there's something about the grittiness and the grindhouse look and feel of the 70s that will keep me coming back more than anything else. The Universal DVD I have has the theatrical and unrated version of the film (unrated is almost always the way to go) but the extras are scant.  You get 9 minutes of deleted scenes (all strung together and non-anamorphic) and a 2.5 minute fluff piece that tells you very little unless you were just born and this is the first movie you've ever seen.

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