How terrifying can an open house be?

Netflix’s new original film “The Open House” may change your perception of a seemingly innocent situation

  • 2 min to read
The Open House

Netflix expands into original horror content with “The Open House.”

“Have you ever thought about how, like, weird open houses are? I mean, you give your keys to someone you hardly know, they stand in one room and welcome in a bunch of complete strangers, and those people just roam around the house. And the realtor doesn’t check the house when it’s done, right? They just ... turn the lights off and go?” 

Logan Wallace, a teenage character portrayed by Dylan Minnette (famous for his role as Clay Jensen in “13 Reasons Why”) finds himself and his mother, played by Piercey Dalton, in an uncomfortable situation that only haunts the nightmares of those who have experienced living in a house they are trying to sell. 

With crippling debt and the tragic loss of his father, Logan and his mother decide to move away from it all. They drive far north to live in a relative’s vacation home only to find that the house is for sale. Logan and his mother must leave the property in the care of the realtors for every open house, where someone with ill intent could easily slip in and stay past their welcome. They soon find that they are not alone in the house, becoming threatened and taunted by someone unseen. Unnerving phone calls come from within the house, items disappear, appliances are fiddled with and sounds come from the basement. The real question is, who is it? The realtors? The creepy small-town neighbors? And can Logan and his mom survive the torment and escape alive? 

With the push for Netflix’s new original content, the horror genre has seen a boost in what could become new classics. “The Open House” is no exception with its great cinematography and realistic plot line. It entertains with possible real-life scenarios, negating any need for fantastical paranormal evil. The film manages to come across as a psychological thriller, until the end where gore and true horror come into play. 

The acting makes the situation all the more believable. Dylan Minnette does not disappoint in scenes of peril and heartache, reminiscent of tear-jerking performances in “13 Reasons Why.”  

“The Open House” leaves viewers with a lot of questions and an unfortunately anti-climatic ending. However, the intense build up, emotional resolutions and subtle hints allow for great speculation and amusement. “

“The Open House” includes references to horror cult classics such as “The Shining” and follows classic horror themes. The film has made considerable use of its estimated $100,000 budget through an exceptional cast and phenomenal scenery, featuring gorgeous vistas of Big Bear Lake in California. The soundtrack further enhances the ambiance, creating intense moments and sudden jump scares. For entertainment purposes, “The Open House” serves as a short, mysterious horror flick great for a Friday night scare.

Rating: 

Torch 3