Let’s face it: it’s hard to find a good horror flick these days. Hollywood churns out sub-par storylines with theme-park scares – when they’re not busy remaking and destroying good horror movies from decades past. Historically leaving audiences (discerning ones, more specifically) underwhelmed with the viewing experience, the genre, on the whole, has been marred with cookie-cutter teen screams, found footage films, and a lack of fear-inducing antagonists.
But the game is changing, and finally, for the better.
Enter writer and director Ted Geoghegan and his 2015 film, We Are Still Here, which premiered back in March at South by Southwest and had its theatrical release on June 5, and one is taken back in time to the glory days of horror.
We Are Still Here centers around couple Anne and Paul, who have recently lost their son Bobby in a car accident and have moved to the wintery countryside of Massachusetts to gain a sense of closure. As they settle into their new house, a neighborly couple hint at the troubled past of the property, which was once a funeral home – but the home harbors a much darker and downright terrifying secret.
Featuring the great scream-queen Barbara Crampton herself (Re-Animator, Chopping Mall), We Are Still Here doesn’t waste too much time to get you acquainted with the characters, outside of the death of Bobby and the family’s connection to May, a self-proclaimed psychic, and her husband Jacob, whose son was Bobby’s freshman roommate in college. The history and back stories almost don’t matter, until a darker force begins to use Bobby’s death against Anne and Paul. What starts as a presumed haunting, as Anne is convinced Bobby’s spirit has followed them to the new home, quickly turns into something much deeper and darker as the couple’s weaknesses are used against them by a somewhat unseen force.
Finally – a horror movie reminiscent of the glory days of the genre, which elicited fear with ease at almost every scene. Inspired by the works of Italian horror master Luigi Fulci, We Are Still Here will no doubt be the Amityville Horror of the twenty first century. The grey feel of a New England winter and low-light, tense scenes at the local restaurant add to the general creepiness of the film, always hinting at something more sinister lurking just around the corner. Chock full of betrayal, lies, hidden agendas and, well, downright frightful paranormal goings-on, We Are Still Here offers all of what’s been missing from the genre in recent history. Catch the film in theaters now or streaming on demand – and be ready to avoid your basement for awhile afterwards.