Until they lose their baby to a miscarriage, a young couple were happily settling into their new life in their spacious home. After the tragedy, Thao is inconsolable and won’t let her baby’s body leave the house. Normal life eludes her as terrifying visions undermine her sanity. Her husband, Thanh, experiences strange phenomena around their home and when his wife turns on him, he must race to uncover the secrets of the house in the alley before they lose their sanity and their lives
‚ÄúHouse in the Alley‚ÄĚ is a Japanese horror film / ghost story that‚Äôs about as slow moving as two snails trying to race each other stuck in a slick of molasses. If that‚Äôs not bad enough there‚Äôs ZERO special effects and I mean NONE. I can sum this movie up in five words: It was a snore fest.
A horror film with dopey red handprints on the walls, no special effects and, well, nothing?? You lost me. This is an open statement to indie / low budget filmmakers ‚Äď Stop making horror movies that wind up focusing more on human characters and less on the paranormal. If you don‚Äôt have the vision or budget than don‚Äôt do it. The result of such is stagnant and boring as is ‚ÄúHouse in the Alley.‚ÄĚ
Here‚Äôs the crappy plot ‚Äď Uuggh‚Ä¶.I‚Äôm falling asleep just writing this‚Ä¶A couple get pregnant, go into labor and unfortunately the baby is dead inside the womb. The baby has to be cut out of her but guess what folks, the couple don‚Äôt bury the people like normal folks, they keep it in an eensy, weensy, tiny baby coffin in their bedroom and ya wanna know something else? Wifey isn‚Äôt in the mood for sex after this. No shit!
OK, first off, don‚Äôt blame her. She had a still birth and second of all her husband is just annoying! What really torqued me was, the husband, Thanh has to call his wife ‚Äúhoney‚ÄĚ at least 100 times during the course of the flick, in fact, if you did a drinking game with ‚ÄúHouse in the Alley‚ÄĚ you‚Äôd be drunk by the 24 minute mark.
As the plot thickens, if that‚Äôs even possible, Thanh, the husband begins hearing weird childlike sounds around the house. Wife Thao just sleeps a lot and basically gets nudged by Thanh when he‚Äôs either trying to wake her up or get sex, neither of which is clear. All the while the corpse of their dead, stillborn baby rests in a baby coffin in their bedroom at the foot of their bed on some pedestal. Creepy? Hell yes. Wrong? On every conceivable level. Scary? Nope, well in real life yes but this is a poorly made B-movie.
So let‚Äôs get complicated. While all this going on Thanh is getting harassed by his mom whom owns the manufacturing plant that he runs. He‚Äôs got labor relation problems, a worker‚Äôs stike going on, etc. Why we need to know this I can‚Äôt figure out. Mom‚Äôs a bitch, I get that. This whole other under story should have been left out.
The obvious happens where Thao, the dead baby‚Äôs mom goes crazy and attacks Thanh. In her own words, she loves him but hates him. Thanh retaliates and sets the baby coffin on fire. Now there‚Äôs more to this movie than this but that‚Äôs all I‚Äôll tell you, I won‚Äôt ruin the horrid ending to this equally boring, horrid flick. Here‚Äôs my pet peeve with indie and B-movies trying to be something they‚Äôre not ‚Äď STOP! Know what you are, embrace, and tell the story. I hate it when this genre tries to pass itself off as something else, you bore me, you waste my time.
Here‚Äôs what I want ‚Äď Give me what I‚Äôm tuning for ‚Äď blood, gore, sex and boobs. I‚Äôm happy, you have a great review. When you try and go Sundance film festival when clearly you are not, you lose me and that‚Äôs what happened with this film. It was a huge lack of scares, bad storytelling, no special effects and a loss of identity ‚Äď What are you trying to be here, an indie, a low budget or a legit movie?
What film makers need to understand is this ‚Äď hook us in early, keep us on said hook and reel us in at the end. That‚Äôs it, so simple and yet I watch movies like ‚ÄúHouse in the Alley‚ÄĚ that just doesn‚Äôt get it. The eerie ghostly kid sounds were so far from scary it was unbelievable. And no special FX when it comes to showing the ghosts of the kids, really? The ghost kids were human for Christ‚Äôs sake. The special FX budget was null. At one point Thanh chases down the sounds tracing them to the roof of his house but falls to the ground and goes gimp which he milks for the rest of movie. It became a running joke with me to the end.
Can you guess if I‚Äôm giving it a good review? If you said NO, you‚Äôre correct! There‚Äôs nothing creepy or scary about ‚ÄúThe House in the Alley.‚ÄĚ There‚Äôs nothing shocking or otherwise. Avoid this movie at all costs. Do not rent it, do not buy it.