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As far as anthologies go, the picture has more pleasures than drawbacks. The first tale of the three featured is the best of the lot.

A stop-motion anthology made up of three half-hour stories set in the same building, The House is an at times delightfully weird and creepy film, even if it's a case of diminishing returns with each subsequent story.

The first segment, directed by Flemish animators Emma De Swaef and Marc James Roels, is definitely the best of the bunch: a gothic tale in the vein of MR James, told with wool-clad figurines that gets it absolutely right in terms of dialogue and atmosphere, even if the ending is a bit abrupt.

The second tale, helmed by Niki Lindroth von Bahr, takes a while to get going, but once it does it spins an intriguing Kafkaesque metaphor about a rat desperately trying to sell the house after a renovation.

Chapter three, while still beautifully animated by Paloma Baeze, is a much more tepid affair, with a bland message about keeping your head above water, that ends The House on a disappointing note.

Still, as far as anthologies go, the picture has more pleasures than drawbacks and with its unique visuals The House deserves to invite you in.

release: 2022

director: Paloma Baeza, Emma De Swaef, Marc James Roels, Niki Lindroth von Bahr

starring: Mia Goth, Matthew Goode, Jarvis Cocker, Helena Bonham Carter


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