Hider in the House

Film, Thrillers

Time Out says

When Tom Sykes (Busey) is released from an institution some 20 years after murdering his sadistic parents, all he wants is a family and a home. Obsessively pragmatic, he installs himself into a newly refurbished house, building a secret room behind a false wall in the loft. By the time the Dryers take up residence, all the rooms are bugged and Sykes has his own entry. Adopting this 'perfect' family, he finds himself increasingly involved in family affairs: cowering like the kids when the parents argue, and then taking an overtly Oedipal role, manoeuvering the father (McKean) out of the picture and introducing himself to the mother (Rogers) as a friendly neighbour. Accept the unlikely premise (director Patrick puts economy over plot exposition), and you'll find a tense psychological suspense film which cannily explores family politics with sour wit and distinctly macabre conclusions. It's a very promising debut from Patrick, resisting the overt violence of the horror movie in favour of uneasy intimacy and intelligent characterisation. Rogers and McKean are first-rate, but Busey in particular has seldom been better employed, his hulking physique a reminder of the tragic monsters of movie yore, immensely threatening but intrinsically vunerable.

By: TCh


Release details

108 mins

Cast and crew

Matthew Patrick
Lem Dobbs
Gary Busey
Mimi Rogers
Michael McKean
Kurt Christopher Kinder
Candy Hutson
Elizabeth Ruscio
Chuck Lafont
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