House of Salem – UK, 2016 – reviews

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‘The Devil has come home’
House of Salem is a 2016 British horror film written and directed by James Crow (Nightmare on 34th StreetCurse of the Witching Tree). The Last British Dragon production stars Jessica Arterton, Jack Brett Anderson, and Liam Kelly.

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A group of kidnappers becomes a child’s unlikely protectors, after finding out they have unwittingly been set up to take part in a deadly game of human sacrifice.

As the kidnappers start to uncover the truth of the safe house they find themselves trapped, they must battle demonic forces in the walls and uncover the terrifying truth of over a hundred years of murder in the name of the Devil…

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Reviews:

” … there’s interesting interplay in the gang – especially between Arterton, Mills and Anderson, though the cruel punchline to this is rather swallowed in a busy last reel. The shocks may be hokey, but that’s part of the fun with robed cultist flicks. The climax, however, brings on a new clutch of characters to replace the killed-off ones, and several too many endings.” The Kim Newman Web Site

“Crow does a good job of balancing the natural behaviours of younger characters, such as hiding under the bed, with more mature dynamics, and very dark real world horrors are as pivotal as anything supernatural. It’s the introspective nature of the drama that makes the film genuinely sinister, and its silences are as effective as its frantic action scenes.” Jennie Kermode, Eye for Film

“The intriguing storyline combined with the characters and setting all add up to a charming indie horror that prefers to scare using drama rather than buckets of blood. Think of quirky Brit cinema like Wake Wood, combined with the child-orientated angle of The Others, and you have the idea of the type of horror Crow’s film is going for.” Bat, Horror Cult Films

“Making great use of an asset like a large, old house sees the story unfold across the many levels of the building. With such a setting there are always chances for things to lurk in darkened corridors or forgotten rooms. Of course, they don’t remain forgotten for long. Crow lets things go ‘full on horror’ for the final act, with several moments that deliver frights that show why he is still a director to watch…” James Simpson, Infernal Cinema

“The script is solid and though the cast is primarily young they carry the film capably, bringing us to a tantalizing ending. The movie does gloss over some details — which is perhaps for the best in regards to things like previous rituals — but it’s an excellent watch.” Laura MacLeod, The Movie Critic Next Door

Main cast:

  • Jessica Arterton
  • Jack Brett Anderson (Wolfblood)
  • Liam Kelly
  • Les Mills
  • Robert Lowe
  • Andrew Lee Potts (Primeval)
  • Dean Maskell
  • Anna Nightingale
  • Nalân Burgess
  • Flynn Allen
  • Danny Szam
  • Pierse Stevens
  • Tony Fadil
  • Yohanna Farrell-Knight
  • Brandon Koen

Release:

House of Salem made its worldwide premiere at the 2016 Horror Channel FrightFest in London.

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