Review by Paul Grammatico
During the past couple of decades, we have been inundated with various horror movies consisting of intruders entering a domicile uninvited. Noted films such as The Strangers and its sequel, Hush, The Purge, You’re Next and Don’t Breathe come to mind. Despite the various twists and turns in these residential spaces, one thing is perfectly clear: Home invasions are never fun., produced by MRP Entertainment and distributed by Terror Films offers up a home invasion but provides a mysterious secret society angle that brings these invaders together.
The film begins with a visual communication from a John Doe (Bruce Davison) who provides Eisenhower (Scott Hamm), Kennedy (Richard Siegelman), Truman (Kipp Tribble (Char Man) who is also the writer and director of the film), and Nixon (Kenny Yates) exposit information of the target on the “run” they are about to execute. The target is a home with two unwilling players one male and one female. The caveat to this home invasion is that they must complete their mission within a specific time.
The film shifts to the house where Daniel (Matt O’Neill) and Jessica (Sunny Doench) reside. There is an air of dysfunction that wafts through the house and is further exacerbated when Jessica’s troubled sister Liz (Andrea Sweeney Blanco) returns for the umpteenth time for a place to stay as a domestic crisis threatens her well-being. When Daniel loses the argument with Jessica, stating that Liz has stolen money from them in the past, he storms off to his home office. Daniel then has a virtual meeting with his boss Mr. Roebuck (John James) discussing a cover-up of an unsavoury business dealing. When the Locusts finally arrive and disrupt this unhappy home, Liz hides from the invaders and makes a desperate attempt to save her sister and herself from this deadly “run”.
Evil at the Door gives us the story of a home invasion story but with an addition of random criminals with aliases consisting of dead presidents gathered by a leader of a secret society to invade homes filled with dysfunction and crime. Kipp Tribble does a very good job of providing a heist-like feel to the story with the nameless invaders a la The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 and Reservoir Dogs and providing the viewer a fly-on-the-wall perspective as we witness the dynamics of Daniel and Jessica’s house, the Locusts’ invasion, and the fight for survival within the domicile.
The acting in the film is competent with a few standout performances. Andrea Sweeney Blanco does a great turn as the troubled and desperate Liz as she does her damnedest to hide from the Locusts. Kenny Yates is terrific as the sadistic, coke-induced newbie Nixon who, due to his erratic behaviour, threatens to derail the “run”.
Evil at the Door is a good addition to the home invasion horror genre, but it is uncertain how this film will rise from the pile of movies which address this similar subject. Despite this issue, this is a film that goes in some interesting directions and gets a lot out of its low budget and that alone makes for a worthwhile watch.
The film will be available across digital and VOD platforms January 28th 2022, one week after it debuts on the Terror Films Channel.
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