Home Sweet Home
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A young married couple experiences the ultimate nightmare when they return home to find an unexpected guest. Trapped by a deranged, methodical killer in their own home, the couple must do whatever it takes to survive his twisted game. Incredibly unnerving, Home Sweet Home is a dark and panic-filled tale not for the faint of heart.
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This indie home invasion thriller does not gratuitously splash blood for effect: the plot is more thoughtful than that. It primarily hinges on the contrasting characters of two women. Rachel Cantu plays the part of a sexy but dangerously psychopathic woman to near perfection, sometimes ditzy, sometimes coldly calculating, a person who enjoys toying with the lives of others. Director John Graham effectively uses her craziness and unpredictability to build suspense, to amuse and to shock. There are just enough comedic moments in the movie to keep one wondering just how nasty Cantu and her criminal lover, played by Christopher Dempsey, can be.
Alexandra Boylan plays opposite Cantu (in every sense) as a naive girl who seeks to take possession of the deserted family home in New Mexico. Empty when she arrives, it turns out to be the headquarters of Cantu and her sidekick: to drive her off, they harass and terrify her; unsuccessful, they dramatically change tactics.
The remote, inhospitable desert location in New Mexico creates a mood that sets this film apart in its genre: videographer Rick Galli uses the harsh desert light to good effect. The isolation creates options and sets limits that make the plot credible.
Boylan, now deprived of her car, is trapped in her home by the desert, while her tormentors plot their next move. Her full acting talent becomes evident as her character is transformed by events, exhibiting shock, dread, despair, anger, calculation and finally, determination in a riveting sequence: she discovers courage and becomes a woman determined to outwit her antagonists and survive.
For Home Sweet Home Suspense, thrills and horror, spiced with a little humor in an unusual setting: this is a film to see!
Unfortunately she has attracted the attention of a couple of bad people lead by Kristi (Raquel Cantu). She is your basic soulless Shari Moon Zombie type of bad girl, and the sole reason for watching this film. Other than her character, the film was boring. I fully expected a wicked twist at the end, i.e. her brother hired them to get rid of her so he can have the house himself, but it didn't happen.
The film wasn't particularly bad, but the twist and the interest factor was lame. Recommend as a rental only.
Parental Guide: F-bomb. Brief distant truck sex. No nudity. Alexandra Boylan in teaser bath.
Finally, it felt like I was watching good writing on the screen.
This is definitely an indie movie, the writing and direction were okay, but the breakdown really occurred in the acting (cheesy "psycho chick" dialog) and the movie's pace - it felt overly long.
It also didn't help that I mistakenly saw the other 2013 Home Sweet Home when looking for this one. That flick is REALLY a nice slow burn, bigger budget, horror/thriller, with a nice plot twist. In fact, just see that one instead.