Dream House

"Weak"

Dream House Review


There's an intriguing idea here, but this thriller feels like it has been compromised in the test-screening phase, resulting in a badly muddled plot. And even a lot of talent in front of and behind the camera can't rescue it.

Will (Craig) has just quit his job as a Manhattan editor to spend more time with his wife (Weisz) and young daughters (Geare and Geare) in their suburban home. But something isn't right. A suspicious man (Koteas) is lurking in the night, while the ex-husband (Csokas) of the neighbour (Watts) across the street oozes pure rage. Then Will starts to realise that nothing is what it seems to be. And he'll need to face reality if he hopes to sort things out.

If you managed to avoid this film's ubiquitous trailer, the plot's key gimmick, which isn't revealed until halfway in, might feel like a clever twist.

Otherwise, there's absolutely no tension in the build-up. Then the choppy screenplay stirs in a contrived villain. And it's clear who this will be even before we realise that the story needs a villain, which it doesn't. Beneath all of this are the ruins of a more interesting blending of The Shining with The Others.

Even so, Craig delivers a committed performance as a father who thinks he's losing his mind. Craig's movie-star charisma and buff physique add interest to a guy who's deeply conflicted and spends much of the film unsure of what's actually happening. Weisz and Watts are also solid, even if their characters feel underwritten, but Csokas and especially Koteas are wasted in roles that have no weight at all.

Director Sheridan establishes a wonderfully dreamy tone that nicely contrasts with the realistic family interaction. And the early creep-outs are genuinely unnerving. Then the story slips into corny, overwrought nuttiness with a script full of gaping holes (one Google search would solve the whole mystery) and production designers who think that bad lighting in the basement is all you need to create atmosphere. But the real problem is that the film feels tampered with, edited into something neither the director nor writer intended. And the result is a thriller that's both bland and predictable



Dream House

Facts and Figures

Run time: 92 mins

In Theaters: Friday 30th September 2011

Box Office USA: $21.3M

Budget: $55M

Distributed by: Universal Pictures

Production compaines: Cliffjack Motion Pictures, Morgan Creek Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 6%
Fresh: 5 Rotten: 77

IMDB: 5.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , , David C Robinson, James G. Robinson

Starring: as Will Atenton, as Ann Patterson, as Libby Atenton, as Jack Patterson, as Boyce, as Trish, as Dee Dee, as Chloe Patterson, as Dr. Greeley, as Dr. Medlin, Bernadette Quigley as Heather Keeler, as Cindi, as Artie, as Capt. Conklin, David Huband as Officer Nelson

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Party Movie Review

The Party Movie Review

Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) is on his way to becoming the new Woody Allen, which...

6 Below Movie Review

6 Below Movie Review

Based on an astonishing true survival story, this film is subtitled "Miracle on the Mountain",...

Mother Movie Review

Mother Movie Review

Darren Aronofsky doesn't make fluffy movies, and has only had one genuine misfire (2014's Noah)....

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

It's been 35 years since Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi classic, which was set in 2019....

On the Road Movie Review

On the Road Movie Review

Wolf Alice fans are likely to be rather disappointed by this hybrid documentary-drama about the...

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Skilfully made by Swedish filmmaker Janus Metz (the award-winning Armadillo), this film is essentially a...

Advertisement
The Glass Castle Movie Review

The Glass Castle Movie Review

There are quite a few terrific moments in this true story, based on the memoir...

Home Again Movie Review

Home Again Movie Review

Reese Witherspoon is so likeable that she can carry even the most hackneyed of romantic...

Brimstone Movie Review

Brimstone Movie Review

An unnerving Western with a sharp female perspective, this film is a series of gruesome...

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Two years ago, Kingsman: The Secret Service seemed to come out of nowhere, ruffling feathers...

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

This biopic about Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne may look like the usual lushly...

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.