Much like Ti West's excellent slow burn horrors The Innkeepers and The House of the Devil, We are Still Here tips its hat to seventies genre films that rely on mood and atmosphere to build up an almost overwhelming sense of dread. The house is as much a character as its inhabitants (both living and the dead), with the measured camerawork slowly exploring the dark recesses of the basement and the weathered exterior of the creaking house, which enhances the feeling of isolation and showcases the unsettling nuances of the fittingly creepy setting.
Comic relief arrives in the form of Jacob Lewis (portrayed here by the ever watchable Larry Fessenden), a jovial hippy who indulges in illegal substances and revels in the opportunity to hold a seance despite his wife May's concerns. Paul Sacchetti's seemingly humourless and deadpan persona is initially at odds with Jacob's lackadaisical approach to communicating with the dead but the family soon have far bigger worries to contend with as all hell breaks loose in their household.
This refreshing take on a somewhat oversaturated genre is a welcome hybrid of horror that should be approached with an open mind, and a spare change of underwear. We Are Still Here demonstrates director Ted Geoghegan's burning passion for the genre and might just be one of the best new horrors of 2015.
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The House of the Devil