The House of the Devil. 2009. USA. Written and directed by Ti West. With Jocelin Donahue, Tom Noonan, Mary Woronov. DCP. Courtesy API Media. 95 min.
In what is surely the worst babysitting gig in film history, Ti West’s slow-burn chiller stars Jocelin Donahue as a pretty college girl of questionable judgment who ignores the advice of her best friend (Greta Gerwig), as well as her own two eyes, by spending the night of a lunar eclipse deep in the woods at the Victorian home of a pair of aging weirdos (Tom Noonan and Mary Wonorov, natch). Jason Zinoman in Vanity Fair writes, “Mr. West—a thinking man’s horror director whose film borrows its title from Georges Melies’s 1896 silent short, widely considered the first horror movie—understands that to truly terrify, you must first do the heavy lifting of suspending an audience’s disbelief.”