The Owners is a 2020 British horror feature film about a group of friends who plan to rob an empty house with a safe full of cash. However, when the owners, an elderly couple, come home early, the tables are suddenly turned.
Directed by Julius Berg from a screenplay co-written with Mathieu Gompel, the Blue Light-Logical Pictures-Wild Bunch-XYZ Films production stars Maisie Williams (The New Mutants; Game of Thrones; Mary Shelley), Rita Tushingham (Straight on Till Morning), Sylvester McCoy (Doctor Who), Ian Kenny, Jake Curran and Andrew Ellis.
Rural England; the early 1990s. Childhood friends Nathan and Terry are spurred on by out-of-town sociopath Gaz to rob the Huggins, the elderly local doctor and his wife.
Nathan’s girlfriend Mary is dead against the plan but the lads are set: the doctor’s house is isolated, there’s a safe full of cash, no none will be home. It’s their way out of the “shithole” they’ve been born into.
However, the Huggins return early. The tables are turned and a deadly game of cat and mouse ensues, leaving the youngsters fighting to save themselves from a nightmare they could never have imagined…
“A few occurrences are admittedly a bit far-fetched. Still, the tension is consistent, the movie is visually interesting, and the performances from Williams and McCoy are terrific. The Owners is a picture that keeps you guessing.” The Aisle Seat
“In a great use of playing with perspective, Berg changes aspect ratio’s that tightens as the situation worsens. What a cool and unique way to mess with your audience, and it’s techniques like this that make The Owners an entertaining movie when it’s not having me believe that the elderly are physically menacing!” Arrow in the Head
“The Owners is a sturdy, if fleeting, thrill that, aside from a couple of splatter moments, favors good, old-fashioned suspense. Director Julius Berg keeps the tension steady, aided by a pulse-pounding, techno-tinged score, even when the third act inexplicably shifts in aspect ratio (more of a sloppy, unnecessary flourish than a potent one).” The Artful Critic
“The Owners offers a solid enough entry in home invasion thrillers, one in which there are no heroes. Other than its bizarre brand of weird, there’s not much else that’s unique about this entry of the subgenre. That means it might entertain for a while if you can look past grating protagonists, but it won’t stay with you after the credits roll.” Bloody Disgusting
“Continuing to tread new ground post Game of Thrones, Maisie Williams proves that she’s as tough as she is talented in The Owners. While it may lack the scares most might expect from modern horror films, it more than makes up for it in suspense.” CRP Writes
“The Owners isn’t a film that’s intended to be picked apart for nuance and hidden messages. It’s a fairly blatant horror-thriller with a cringe-inducing boxcutter fight, plenty of psychological aspects as all of the characters try to outwit one another and a morbidly humorous grand finale…” Cryptic Rock
“There’s a larger story to unlock within the vault of this ageist British home invasion thriller that turns a thwarted heist into a mysterious charade between a gang of miscreants and their supposed captives.” Dread Central
” …one of the most repulsive films of the year. During the finale, Maisie Williams starts beating the shit out of someone with a frying pan, and I actually started to laugh maniacally, not so much because it was funny but more that the movie had gone so far into trash territory that it broke me.” Flickering Myth
“This film is brutal, tense, and will leave you feeling uneasy, but that’s what horror is all about. Just when you think you know what’s going to happen next the rug is pulled out from under you and you’re left saying, “What the f*ck?” This film has more twists than Babusar Pass, but somehow director Julius Berg pulls it all off seamlessly.” Horror Fuel
“The Owners is ridiculously creepy from beginning to end. Half the time I had no clue what was going on, or what was going to happen next. My heart was pounding, I was on the edge of my seat, and I had no idea who could be trusted. My mind was spinning almost the entire movie trying to figure it all out.” Mama’s Geeky
“The Owners appears fairly lightweight at first, then becomes hectic, mysterious, unpleasant, and surprising. There are a few possible strands which do not get explored (and I’d love to know if they do in the original book), but these add to the mystery, rather than confusion […] this is definitely one for fans of tense and quirky genre films.” Ready Steady Cut!
“The Owners may cover familiar territory as it sets up its second and third act, but it delivers plenty of nail-biting tension and eerie sequences along with a jarring climax. Recommended…” The Scariest Things
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In the USA, The Owners was released theatrically, On-Demand and Digital HD by RLJE Films on September 4th 2020. RLJE Films will release the film on DVD and Blu-ray on October 20th 2020. Buy via Amazon.com
In the UK, Signature Entertainment presents The Owners is on Digital Platforms 22nd February and DVD 1st March 2021.
Cast and characters:
Maisie Williams … Mary
Rita Tushingham … Ellen Huggins
Sylvester McCoy … Doctor Huggins
Ian Kenny … Nathan
Jake Curran … Gaz
Andrew Ellis … Terry
Stacha Hicks … Jean
Thame, Cobham, Surrey, England
West London Film Studios, Hayes, Hillingdon, London, England
Our own rating: