House (1977)

house poster 1977 movie hausu
7.0 Overall Score
Story: 4/10
Acting: 3/10
Visuals: 9/10

So weird it stops being weird and becomes something you can't look away from

Nonsense plot, poor acting, crazy visuals are too much

Movie Info

Movie Name:  House (aka ハウス Hausu)

Studio: Movie Studio

Genre(s): Movie Genre

Release Date(s): Movie Release Date

MPAA Rating: Movie Rating

house-hausu-girls

No…this is not ominous at all

When summer plans fall through with their teacher, Prof (Ai Matsubara), Kung Fu (Miki Jinbo), Mac (Mieko Sato), Melody (Eriko Tanaka), Sweet (Masayo Miyako), and Fantasy (Kumiko Oba) go with their friend Gorgeous (Kimiko Ikegami) to visit her aunt (Yōko Minamida).  Arriving at her rural home, strange things begin happening and the girls begin to disappear one-by-one.  As the danger grows, Gorgeous’ aunt seems to be getting younger, and a story of eternal love destroyed by war might become a story of terror.  Will the girls survive the summer or even the night?

house-hausu-decapitated-head-mac

Mac…you eat everything!!!

Directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi and written by Chiho Katsura, House (orハウス Hausu) was originally commissioned as an attempt to capitalize on the popularity of Jaws and continue the idea of horror.  The film was met by questions and negative reviews, but has since become a cult classic due to the out-and-out bizarre visuals and storyline.  The movie made American theaters in 2010 and was released by Criterion (Criterion #539).

There is no way around it, House is seriously screwed up.  I’m a big fan of the Katamari video game series, but this tops that in sheer weirdness.  It is one of those films you start watching and can’t turn away…not because you are captivated by the story or acting, but because you can’t figure out what is going on and where it will go next.

house-hausu-piano-attack

I really hate piano lessons

This is not an endorsement, but I found House just mesmerizing in its bizarre visuals alone.  The movie is often compared to a live action Scooby-Doo because many of the effects become cartoonish and the scares just aren’t scary…they’re weird.  You get floating heads, pianos eating people, legs that can act independently of their body, and dangerous lighting equipment.  Added to this story based bizarre stuff is that Obayashi seemed to have gotten ahold of an editor that allowed him to try anything.  Sometimes the movie just randomly goes in slow motion or loops or as mentioned becomes cartoons with super-imposed images.  It is like some bad acid trip.

house-hausu-cartoon

Hmmmm….this didn’t happen last summer

The film is mostly made up of first time actresses.  The characters are all stock characters.  You have the one who likes to eat, the one who likes instruments, the one who daydreams, the “hot” one, the brainy one, the nice one, and the kick-ass kung fu fighter girl.  They are as one dimensional as they sound, but for some reason this works (or almost works).  You don’t get why stuff is happening, but you can go with it.

House is worth seeing as a “what the hell?!?!” type movie.  I don’t love it, I don’t hate it, and I would definitely watch it again…preferably with a large group.  Is it a horror movie?  Is it a comedy?  Who’s the target audience?  It makes no sense and that is ok.  Jaws, it is not, but House is something that feels truly original and different…and definitely not for everyone though no one will ever forget it.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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