Masters of horror Wes Craven and Sean Cunningham revisit their landmark film that launched Craven’s directing career and influenced decades of horror films to follow: The Last House on the Left. Bringing one of the most notorious thrillers of all time to a new generation, they produce the story that explores how far two ordinary people will go to exact revenge on the sociopaths who harmed their child.
The night she arrives at the remote Collingwood lakehouse, Mari (Sara Paxton) and her friend are kidnapped by a prison escapee and his crew. Terrified and left for dead, Mari’s only hope is to make it back to parents John and Emma (Tony Goldwyn, Monica Potter).
Unfortunately, her attackers unknowingly seek shelter at the one place she could be safe. And when her family learns the horrifying story, they will make three strangers curse the day they came to The Last House on the Left.
First let me start by stating that I’m a huge Wes Craven fan. When I heard that he was re-making The Last House on the Left I was a bit sceptical, given how brutal and gratuitously violent the first film was I wasn’t sure if it could be adapted for a modern audience…
In the first half an hour of this movie I was proved completely wrong. Comprising of a strong cast, a well thought out storyline that stayed both true to the original 1972 version and yet subtly introducing a modern enough slant to work for today’s audience, it left me absolutely hooked and I can honestly say I enjoyed it more than the original film, which for a remake is very rare!
What takes The Last House On The Left 2009 to a whole new level of movie is it’s ability to make the audience sit up, take notice and genuinely feel the anger, pain and vengeance of the characters involved.
Viewing isn’t always pleasant; the notorious rape scene for example has not been dumbed down or censored for today’s audience. It isn’t slick, it isn’t sexy, it is as brutal and as stomach churning as you would expect it to be in real life and that’s what instantly makes you connect and feel for Mari as she fights for her life, losing every last piece of her dignity.
The casting element of the film just felt ‘right’ from the start to me. I loved Tony Goldwyn in Ghost (He plays the bad guy, Sam’s best friend, remember?) and in this role you know that he’s capable of playing Mari’s father perfectly. Both he and Monica Potter (Mari’s Mother) manage to combine both a maternal calmness and the vicious vengeance fuelled by this to embrace their roles completely.
The gang of thugs are believable, emotion evoking and genuinely disgusting, you simply cannot wait for them to get their comeuppance and when they do, there’s no apologies made for the blood, guts and gore that follow. The introduction of Krug’s son Justin as a moral conscience of the new movie was a good one, giving us someone ‘on the inside’ of the gang so to speak that we as viewers could relate to.
The tagline of the movie ultimately sum’s up what you will leave the theatre thinking: “If bad people hurt someone you love, how far would you go to hurt them back?” and I think it’s something we can all identify with on some level.
Once again, the master of horror Wes Craven has delivered a movie that shocks, thrills and genuinely entertains throughout its entire 90 minute run time and I urge you all to go and watch it. Brutal, bloody and fantastically entertaining!
Check out the official site here: http://www.thelasthouseontheleft.com/ to find out more about the movie, theres also a couple of great interactive games.