Review: The Haunting of Hill House

the haunting of hill house
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Plot:

The haunting of Hill house: In the summer of 1992, Hugh and Olivia Crain temporarily move into an old mansion, Hill House, along with their five children: Steven, Shirley, Theodora (Theo), Luke and Eleanor (Nell). They experience paranormal occurrences and tragic loss, forcing them to move out of the house. In October 2018, 26 years after the hauntings, the Crain siblings and their estranged father, Hugh, reunite after tragedy strikes again, forcing them to confront their inner demons from their shared childhood while mourning their losses. (Wikipedia)

Review:

Being a horror-junkie, this Netflix series felt like Christmas came early this year. Honestly, I have never been as impressed by a horror series as I was with Mike Flanagans adaption of Shirley Jackson’s book “The haunting of Hill house”. Like many horror fans, I was over the moon when this aired.

The well written story slowly unfolds as we get to know the grown up Crain kids. Each family member shows us a different angle of the story, as they all had their own unique experiences in their childhood. When it comes to cinematography, Flanagan has it spot on. The shots are hands down amazing and they capture the sinister mood of the story perfectly.  I loved how the scenes in Hill house were shot in a wider angle, making it look like the house devoured the characters inside. The house itself could be the equally evil twin of Stephen King’s Rose Red or the Overlook Hotel. 

What everyone wants to know… Is it scary? Although the series felt mostly like a drama to me, the horror elements were pretty impressive and well timed. There are not too many jump scares, and who needs them anyway? The overall feel of the series is atmorpheric, rather than scary. Classic scenes like a slowly turning doorknobs and eerie shadows on the walls  are classics I’ll never get tired of. Some shots are delightfully sinister, but the thing that will get under your skin the most is the emotional struggle of each family member trying to deal with their childhood traumas in their own way. And talking about childhood: I salute the kid actors who managed to deliver the story so incredibly well! 

Strong performances, incredibly well written and delightfully sinister, you need to binge this with the lights off! 

4.5

Conclusion

You seldomly come across a horror production that has it all: Killer script, fantastic writing, impressive cast and amazing cinematography. To quote  Brian Tallerico on RogerEbert.com: “The best horror film of the year also happens to be one of the best TV shows of 2018. Don’t miss it.”

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