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Don’t Go in The House 
Written by: on March 31st, 2012

Theatrical Release Date: USA, 1980
Director: Joseph Ellison
Writers: Joseph Ellison, Ellen Hammill, Joe Masefield
Cast: Dan Grimaldi, Charles Bonet, Bill Ricci, Robert Osth, Dennis M. Hunter, John Hedberg, Ruth Dardick, Johanna Brushay

DVD released: March 26th, 2012
Approximate running time: 80 Minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English
Subtitles: N/A
DVD Release: ArrowDrome
Region Coding: Region 2 PAL
Retail Price: £5.99

Synopsis: A psychopath killer traps and kill women with a flamethrower.

Though this film is often billed as a Slasher film, content wise this film leans more towards a psychological thriller territory. At the heart of this film is  story about man, who loses his grip on reality due a childhood trauma. The root of his trouble stems from a incident when he was a young boy and his mother held his arms over open flames. After years of suppressing this trauma things once again come to the forefront, when one of his co-workers is injured when they are horrible burned during a accident at work. From there the narrative from the protagonist, who spend the remainder of the film luring women and burning them alive.

As mentioned before, this film is more of a psychological thriller and outside of one gruesome kill scene in which a victim it torched by a flamethrower on screen. The remainder of the violence is rather tame and virtually bloodless. Also while watching this film, don’t be surprised if you are overcome with a feeling of Déjà Vu. Since this film borrows heavily from Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, most notably the overbearing mother character.

Pacing wise things move along at a brisk enough pace that there are no major lulls. Visually the film is not going to blow you away, with the only moment visually that leaves any lasting impression being the aforementioned scene where a woman is torched by a flamethrower on screen.

Trying to gauge the performances in this film is easily the most difficult task, since outside of the film’s protagonist all of the other characters are nothing more than chess pieces in the grander scheme of things. Cast in the role of this film’s demented and very unsympathetic protagonist is a actor named Dan Grimaldi, who’s performance far exceeded my expectations. It is not easy playing such a despicable character and even more so considering how one dimensional all the other characters are in this film. Ultimately Don’t Go in The House is a mediocre Horror film that is all to content to travel well worn ground and bring nothing new to the table.

The DVD:

Note: This review is based on a test disc and may not be representative of the final product.

ArrowDrome presents Don’t Go in The House in a anamorphic widescreen that retains the film’s original aspect ratio. Colors look accurate, black levels look good and details generally look crisp throughout. There are no problems with compression and print debris is minimal.

This release comes with one audio option, a Dolby Digital mono mix in English. There are no problems with distortion, dialog comes through clearly and everything sounds balanced.

Extras for this release are limited to a teaser and a trailer for the film. Also included with this release are trailers for The Funhouse, City of the Living Dead, The Beyond, The House by the Cemetery and Dawn of the Dead. Overall Don’t Go in The House gets a well rounded audio / video presentation from ArrowDrome.

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