|DVD The Occupants
Run time: 79 min
Director: Todd Alcott
Writers: Todd Alcott, Holly Golden
Stars: Kristen Ariza, Ashanti Brown, Macey Cruthird
A supernatural thriller, the film revolves around Lucy, who has a new husband, a new home and a new baby, but old ghosts won’t let her be. She has dedicated her life to helping families break the cycle of abuse, so when she and her husband, Wade, see the echoes of a violent family tragedy in their home, Lucy tries to help the tortured souls break free of their torment and move on. She finds, however, that these ghosts don’t want her help – they want to lead Lucy and her family to their doom. Written by AnonymousB
Release Date: 13 January 2014 (USA)
After moving into a new house, a woman and her husband find the place haunted by the violent tragedy of the former occupants of the house and try to stop those actions from happening to them and her new baby.
This here is a really weak and overall bland thriller disguised as a horror film. The biggest issue with this one is the fact that the central premise is nothing to really get worked up over, and it shows in the reactions of the characters. The primary focus is one the shots of the woman losing her mind over the events that transpire, yet none of what happens early on in this is enough to warrant such actions to take place and even worse off, doing so with the rather bland happenings that this goes through being just so unnecessary and uninviting that the reactions to them are completely unrelated to the events portrayed. That these in turn lead into the film's main segment being a series of investigations into whatever happened to the previous owners is so boring and lifeless that after such a troubling opening it sucks the energy out of the movie from there with endless scenes of her going over documents and papers that fill up time so that it's just so hard to stay invested in the movie as a whole from there on. The main subplot about these scenes is the film's second biggest issue, the constant referrals to the counselor friend she thinks is taking advantage of her yet is the first person she goes to whenever there's a bump in the night or a weird flash-vision she has, and despite every attempt to the contrary to make us believe he's some sort of creepy psychopath, he comes off as calm and level-headed about the situation while she rants and raves like a maniac then turns the tables back on him saying he's the one trying to screw her around. This happens a good three or four times after a conversation saying that she'll have nothing to do with him, so this in fact becomes extremely troubling and confusing as to why this goes on. Since the film earlier made mention of the fact that the supernatural haunting actions were unwarranted of the extreme reactions taken, that in turn brings up the fact that the majority of the supernatural going on here is really not that scary and oftentimes just plain dull, with a few somewhat decent scares here including the appearance of a demonic face on the wall hidden behind a poster, the ghostly visions of women running around the house and the ominous threat of violence depicted towards the infant son which does have a hint of believability to it, yet whatever happens is then undone by the absolutely ridiculous finale that makes no sense and undermines the general plot of what came before it. These are really enough problems to lower this one significantly.
Rated R: Violence, Language, children-in-jeopardy and a shadowy sex scene.
There is not much to be said about this film. It's not the worst out there but it's near the bottom of the barrel. I wouldn't recommend it.
It is about a woman called Clare who has a new husband and baby and they are living in a new house. She is a social worker and seems to have a fulfilling job and a perfect family life. Her husband has a nightmare about a beaten woman, and then Clare starts seeing her as well as two other apparitions in the house. The house then becomes haunted by them, I.e. The Occupants. Clare tries getting help from her colleague and ex-lover Glenn. He doesn't believe her. Her and her husband then research the history of the house trying to find out if anyone was murdered there. She calls a psychic who feels no presence in the house. She tries getting help from her babysitter who tells her about demons. Things get worse and we find out that Clare was adopted after her father killed her mother and sister. These are in fact the apparitions she has been seeing. She also doesn't have a husband as she imagined him and her child's father is in fact her ex who has been spying on her in order to get her evidence of this and help her. She kills him and then herself. The baby is placed in the care of Clare's sister. The End.
Overall an unimaginative film with a weak story and mediocre acting. The first twenty minutes is bearable as we don't yet know what is going on, but then the movie drags out to its uninspired and predictable ending. It tries to mix psychological and supernatural horror and ends up being ineffective and bland instead. Don't waste your time on this, rather watch Insidious, Sinister, The Conjuring, Paranormal Activity or The Others. Each of them is better than the occupants.
I was really excited by the beginning of this film. It was obviously a low budget effort but it was well directed. The casting was excellent, and most of the performances were as well. I personally find Cristin Milioti captivating, ever since seeing her play Johnny Sac's daughter on The Sopranos.
The story was wonderfully creepy for the first half. Unfortunately as it dragged on it started getting cluttered with half-developed ideas that teased but never really delivered.
It'll be interesting to see what this director does next. He showed enough here to warrant a second chance. Hopefully it'll be better developed.