I had been looking forward to the adaptation of Stephanie Perkins’ There’s Someone Inside Your House. Perkins has penned some of my favourite YA romance fiction, so I was eager to see her horror work on the small screen. Book fans, I’m sorry to say that the movie has very little resemblance to the book, and as it moved from page to film, some of the more compelling elements of the book are lost in the process. You’ll see what I mean as you get further into the film, but I won’t blame you if you don’t make it that far.
Makani (Sydney Park) and friends are shocked when they discover that the popular football player at their school has been murdered. Not only that, with his death came the revelation of his secret – a hazing ritual gone wrong. As more students at the high school end up murdered, Makani becomes afraid that her own secret will be revealed, and all the new friendships and relationships she’s built will go up in smoke.
To the film’s credit, there are some decent kills. The first two are especially gory, and felt fresh and innovative. The killer’s mask, which is a 3D printed version of each victim’s face, is kind of iconic since we all know the mask of the killer has to be distinctive in some way if you want to create a stand-out slasher. However, the rest of the film just meanders, and the story in between the kills just feels non-existent. There isn’t any tension, and while the film tries to introduce possible red herrings, the real killer becomes pretty obvious once we are introduced to Makani’s gang of friends.
This film feels like such a letdown, especially after we got The Fear Street trilogy from Netflix. There’s Someone Inside Your House is also directed by Patrick Brice, who directed Creep and Creep 2, which are able to do so much on a limited budget and 2 actors, while this film squanders whatever potential there was in the beginning.
Makani’s past isn’t the only secret she’s keeping, as she also had a summer romance with resident bad boy Ollie (Théodore Pellerin). Besides frequent make-out sessions, we aren’t quite sure why the two are even drawn to each other, or why Ollie claims to know Makani so well. Besides long, lingering stares, Park and Pellerin don’t really have much chemistry with each other. Makani is such a blank slate, characterised mainly by this dark secret she’s holding onto, and her love for poetry – the poetry isn’t great, either. In a slasher film, we need to be given characters that we want to root for. Makani is alright, but I realised I wasn’t particularly invested in her making it out of the entire thing alive.
The conclusion is just so absurd that I threw in the towel at that point. The killer’s actions didn’t make sense, the whole villainous monologue wasn’t riveting in any way, but I guess my brain was too switched off to care. With a runtime of 96 minutes, it felt longer than it actually is, which is the worst thing possible for a slasher flick. Trust me when I say you’re better off with Fear Street – all we get here is slasher boredom.
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A slasher shouldn't feel as boring and dragged out as this film is. From a barely functioning plot to characters we don't really root for, There's Someone Inside Your House squanders whatever potential there was from its earlier set pieces.
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