The surprises of the end trump pretensions

The “angel” uses boldness and mystery to overturn the class rules


Despite the narrow space of stories of home invasion / storming movies, the reasons for their existence will never end, as they are not like action films or superheroes, and they require cinemas and huge screens so that their fans enjoy the atmosphere of the film, but it is viewable anywhere, because the camera does not You go out of the house.

We called it narrow space because the story is confined to a house, so if you see the film in a narrow room, more than one wide hall may merge into it, and this leads us to the second reason for its popularity, which is the psychological factor: claustrophobia, or fear of narrow or crowded places.

There is a third reason, which is the human instinct to defend his own space, and here the political factor enters the matter, when we see films about the invasion of homes that are in fact symbolic of the invasion of countries.

The latest film of this sub-trend of horror cinema is The Owners (The Owners), directed by Julius Berg, which is accompanied by intense violence and surprises that some may see familiar, and others see shocking, this is a movie in which the invaders enter the wrong house and turn into victims.

in a different way

The film is based on a French graphic novel, "A Moonlit Night".

The work does not look new and does not set new rules for the films of this trend, but sometimes it turns them around at the moment when the viewer feels comfortable and that things are going according to what they expect.

The comparison might make it easier if we mentioned the movie "Don't Breathe", which we wrote reading in this space in the summer of 2016, and that movie is higher than this, because it contains an original story, which is about three friends who break into the house of a blind man who depends on the sense of hearing, so their task becomes very difficult. They should never make noises, and in the middle of the movie the man turns the tables on them.

Here the same thing happens, but in a different way, the bad thing about Berg is that Berg does not come up with anything new in the idea, and the good thing about it is that he puts the surprises of the film in excellent places relative to its rhythm, meaning the events go to where the viewer expects, and before what is expected happens a surprise explodes, the fluctuation of the whole situation Upside down, and makes the viewer scratch his head in confusion.

In the English countryside we see Terry (Andrew Ellis), Nathan (Ian Kenny) and Jazz (Jake Curran), the three hanging out near the house of Dr. Huggins (Sylvester McCoy), and his confused and mentally ill wife Ellen with a devilish laugh (Rita Tashingham).

The three guys are joined by Nathan's friend, Mary (the famous Macy Williamson from Game of Thrones), who initially resisted the break-in but later ran into her, on paper the plan is simple and clear: based on information they got from Terry's mother, who works as a cleaner. According to Dr. Huggins, the gang knows when the people of the house are leaving, so the three planned to seize what was in the iron cupboard in the basement of the house, and for your information Terry's mother gave the information without her knowing the gang's intention.

The three cannot break the treasury, then the doctor and his wife arrive at home early, and finally he falls into the hands of the invaders who ask him for the secret number to open the treasury. One of the strengths, after the doctor’s capture, is the dynamic of the relationship between the six in a narrow place.

The film, written by the director and Matthew Gumpel, deliberately fails to clarify the danger in the scene. Jazz incites Nathan to violence, and the doctor calms his confused wife, and the two are tied in the basement, then comes Nathan's rebellion against Jazz as a result of the instigation of Dr. Huggins.

Then the disagreement between Nathan and Jazz exploded, and it developed into a violent battle and a clash of hands, leading to the death of Nathan, then a Jaz attempt to kill Ellen, the wife of the doctor, and Mary intervened at the last moment by striking him with a hammer on the head, a blow that killed him immediately, then Mary loosened the doctor's bond and his wife to turn the table on her The doctor displays a pistol and asks her not to leave.

The last half hour

Despite some artificial scenes, and some incomprehensible technical decisions that appear in the last half hour, it is the surprises of the dark end of the film that make the viewer think about what he saw, instead of forgetting the film as soon as it is over.

There is the scene of the doctor launching a gas at home and wearing him and his wife two special jackets and two gas masks, as if they were in a biological weapons laboratory, and chasing Mary in a narrow space, and hitting her on the back, an artificial scene that almost undermined the general atmosphere of the film.

The strangest thing is that Berg in this artificial scene changed the size of the screen aspect ratio (the ratio of the length of the frame to its width), transforming it from a wide screen to a narrow square!

We do not find any explanation for this decision, but what makes us care about the events in this "childish" scene is the difficult psychological state that Terry suffers from a nervous breakdown, and here there is a background story of the matter that we do not want to uncover in order to preserve the viewer's desire to explore the film.

Perhaps it is difficult to come up with something new to the house invasion films, but boldness, breaking the rules and traditions, or turning the genre rules upside down, as it is said, is an important requirement of every filmmaker .. Berg does it here without hesitation at the end of the film, especially after showing a performance that ranges between sobriety. The madness of McCoy, the innocence and demonism of Tashengam, the fear and the courage of Williamson, the detachment from reality of Terry who had lost the ability to distinguish between his ally and his enemy.

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The knife is at the vein

One of the most beautiful elements of the film is the mystery of Dr. Huggins while he is in captivity, and he manipulates Nathan on the one hand and deceives Jazz on the other hand, by giving him wrong numbers for the locker, and the question: Does he not fear for his wife when he sees the knife in her vein?

This is a question that comes to mind as Mary, the most famous actress in the film, as well as ours.

A movie in which invaders enter the wrong house and become victims.

The work is adapted from the French graphic novel, A Moonlit Night.

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