‘The Bake Street Hauntings’ (2011) Movie Review: Less is Sometimes More
Directed by Michael Rocco
Written by Kristina Rocco & Michael Rocco
Starring: Michael Rocco, Loren Carstens, and Elizabeth Burgalassi
A young couple accepts an offer for $2 million to stay in a haunted house for a week. Supposedly based on real footage and events.
Horror fans can develop a nervous tick at the mere mention of found footage. It’s a love/hate relationship that we can’t seem to quit, and the odds aren’t in our favor. We occasionally hit the jackpot with a subdued and well-filmed movie of this nature, and I think The Bake Street Hauntings is one of those silent killers. Filmed for $25,000, Michael Rocco proves that less can be much more if we’re given a couple of smart and warm protagonists. A severe lack of characterization kills a lot of these films because we never connect with the blatantly cliché or throwaway characters.
A newly married couple accepts a strange challenge from a wealthy benefactor – survive a week inside this reportedly haunted home for a week and their prize is a life-altering $2 million bucks. Unable to resist, the couple temporarily moves in, confidant they can do it – that $2 million is practically in the bank. They find the home is wired with video cameras, something that surprises them at first, but they begin to taunt the viewer as the days start to rack up. The film makers used generous amounts of reserve in not revealing too much too quickly. The first few incidents are unnerving, but hardly terrifying to the hopeful couple. Hey, maybe it’s strange, but the money puts the activity on the back burner.
The incidents eventually become more and more intense are the days pass. Obviously, by the end, things are turned up full blast and the knob is ripped off. The couple was perfect, coming across as very warm and genuine; I’m assuming the improv dialogue helped form a quick chemistry. The incidents are creepy as hell, leaving the viewer not only fearful for the couple, but scared to stare too deeply into the dark. The feeling of dread is set in stone, something the actors and director should be proud of. I was seriously feeling for this couple, I felt like any scene could have been their last. The few visual effects required are painfully effective, helping cement the protagonists and viewer into the same horror cement. This is a good one, kids. It’s hardly the first of its kind, but this has heart – something most horror fans will appreciate. I think I found this on Amazon VOD or Vudu. It was cheap to rent and packed a huge payoff. Give this one a chance.
I’m gonna have to agree 100%.
Movies with such a low-budget like this can be almost instantly subject to failure, and yet this scared the absolute shite out of me. I watched it once about a month ago and while I plan on eventually watching with others, I’m a little reluctant due to the fact that I get chills just thinking about it. A few scenes made me so unbelievably uncomfortable that I nearly had to shut it off. Me, a person who is quite literally OBSESSED with horror films, spooky stuff, the supernatural in general….so naturally it takes a whole lot for anything to REALLY get under my skin.
Hope to see more like this in the future!
Such a great feeling isn’t it?