LAIR (2021) Reviews and overview of British horror

 

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‘Sometimes your inner demons get out’

Lair is a 2021 British supernatural horror film about a sceptical academic who is forced to confront the fact that evil may be real.

Written and directed by Adam Ethan Crow – making his feature debut – with additional dialogue by Stuart Wright, based on Crow’s story. Produced by Shelley Atkin, Adam Ethan Crow, Stuart Nicholas White and James Whitehill (line producer).

The Ditto Films production stars Corey Johnson (Morbius), Oded Fehr (Star Trek: Discovery), Alexandre Gilbreath (Becoming Elizabeth), Anya Newall, Alana Wallace and Lara Mount.

Plot:

Doctor Steven Caramore (Corey Johnson) specialises in debunking supernatural myths. When a friend (Oded Fehr) is accused of murder, claiming he was possessed by an unseen menace, Caramore begins to question his own beliefs. He investigates his friend’s claims, setting off a chain of events that forces Caramore and a young family into a battle for survival…

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Reviews:

“A great amount of effort has gone into bringing Lair to life. Whilst the visual effects and creature designs are strong, a muddled narrative and poor dialogue choices let Crow’s film down. The bones of the film do show some glimpses of real talent, with a little more self-editing and maturity of experience, Crow could deliver some very interesting future projects.” The Hollywood News

“The ins and outs of the plot get fairly hard to follow […] though it pays off with a decent final twist about who’s really been benefiting from all this. I would have said a far-fetched twist, but the believability train leaves well before we get to this juncture and simply delivering a creepy surprise is enough to cap off a messy, but often entertaining picture.” The Kim Newman Web Site

“While the premise of Lair (the deliberate haunting of an ‘ordinary’, oblivious family) is certainly intriguing, its set-up is too contrived to stand up to scrutiny, and none of it, during its unraveling let alone upon reflection, makes a whole lot of sense, as we (eventually) see an unnecessarily over-complicated stratagem play out, with narrative economy the first to be sacrificed. Lair is a diabolical mess of a movie…” Projected Figures

“Writer/director Adam Ethan Crow has some good ideas here that are not fully realised but he manages to conjure a few good scares along the way. On the plus side, it looks fabulous thanks to Stuart White’s cinematography and there are some genuinely creepy moments.” Starburst

Release:

1091 Pictures acquired the North American distribution rights in July 2021.

Cast and characters:

Oded Fehr … Ben Dollarhyde
Corey Johnson … Steven Caramore
Emily Haigh … Sam
Sean Buchanan … Detective Mark Pitt
Alexandra Gilbreath … Wendy Coulson
Aislinn De’Ath … Maria Engel (as Aislinn De’ath)
Lee Nicholas Harris Lee Nicholas Harris … Stuart Crowley
Alana Wallace … Carly Cortes
Anya Newall … Joey
Paul Warren … Abayzou
Jen Brister … Alaina Sheen
David Whitney … Officer Douglas Caine
Tara Dowd … Carol Dollarhyde
Sam Pamphilon … Sammy Benett
Zara Symes … Officer Kaitlyn Ryan (as Zara Day)
Robert Dukes … Detective Ron Adkin
Joseph Mitchell … Towny
Joe Zalias … PC Kawalski
Simon Balfour … Detective Brightman
Anil Desai … Vito Braisa
Lara Mount
Andrea Bennett … Ana Avila
Kashif O’Connor … Ola
Jack Sidney Burke … Chris
Robb Mookhoek … Self
Nathan Munslow … Evil Peeper

Behind-the-scenes:

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