FILM: House at the End of the Street

New in town? Maybe you shouldn’t make friends with the guy living in the house his parents were murdered in…unless he’s cute. And, maybe you shouldn’t get in a stranger’s car if you’re walking alone on a dark road at night…unless it’s raining. That seems to be the logic of Jennifer Lawrence’s Elissa in Mark Tonderai’s new thriller House at the End of the Street when she befriends her mysterious new neighbor, Ryan (Max Thieriot).

When Elissa and her flippant mom (Elisabeth Shue) move in next door to the scene of the gruesome crime (which appears to be more “through the woods” than “at the end of the street”) they quickly learn from their neighbors that Ryan’s little sister killed their parents while he was out of town, and, better yet, legend has it she’s still alive and set up camp in those same woods. The rent was cheap, though, and in this family sound judgment seems to be in short supply.

The quick-paced film has some funny moments and cheap scares. There’s definitely some cheese and weak dialogue, but it’s not without rewarding twists and turns. You’ll have lots of advice for Elissa as you watch the movie, like: “Don’t go outside,” “Don’t get in his car,” and “Listen to your mother.” One thing you won’t be saying, though, is “Put your clothes back on.” The film is rated PG-13, so if you’re hoping to see more of Jennifer Lawrence than you did in the The Hunger Games, you’ll be sorely disappointed.

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