I absolutely love Lionsgate’s After Dark Original films. I’ve seen a slew of them, going back several years to the After Dark Horrorfest series. Although I’ve seen many of them, I can only recall two (out of the dozens I’ve watched) that I didn’t care for. HOUSEKEEPING is an After Dark title that certainly does not fit into that category. And while it’s not a perfect film, it’s very good, and I highly recommend giving it a shot.
If you are not familiar with HOUSEKEEPING, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of Lionsgate:
Lucy, a young med student in need of quick cash to help her troubled brother, reluctantly accepts the too-good-to-be-true position as a housekeeper offered to her through a friend of a friend. But things quickly take a disturbing turn. Her never-seen employer seems to have a dark side, and the job reveals itself to be anything but normal.
Director Jennifer Harrington should be commended for what she accomplishes with this film. There’s essentially only one character that we ever see, and she never talks. The dialogue we do get is from voicemails, and they are skillfully used to tell the story. I am very impressed with the originality of this concept, and I applaud Harrington for taking such a bold step.
HOUSEKEEPING is shot well for the most part, however there’s one complaint I have about the picture quality: the color correction. The film practically has none. The result is a dull picture with bland color that does nothing to help the story. This isn’t really a deal-breaker for me, but I feel it worth noting because it makes the film look cheap.
The acting is very good, with Adriana Solis portraying the main character, Lucy. Solis gives a mesmerizing performance, conveying a wide range of emotions with simply her body language. Despite the lack of dialogue, Solis convinces the audience to feel everything she feels, and in turn, offers viewers a deep immersion into the story.
There are practically no special effects in the film, but they aren’t needed. What wins the gold here is the story. I will not give anything away, but let’s just say a person’s past can catch up with them when they least expect it.
But although I enjoyed HOUSEKEEPING, and I am recommending it, the film does have a couple of flaws. I mentioned the color correction above, but I also have to mention the annoying voicemail beeps that precede each message. There are waaaaaay too many of them, and they blast loudly each time. I found myself having to adjust the level of my surround-sound each time they sprang up. Normally, this wouldn’t be such a nuisance, but the fact there are so many make it so.
Overall, however, HOUSEKEEPING is a great film, and I definitely suggest you give it a look. The film released earlier this week in a variety of formats.