Girl child, boy child, listen well.
Be in bed by midnight’s bell.
N’er let a stranger through your door.
N’er leave each other all alone.
Good sister, good brother be
Follow well these cautions three.
Long as your blood be ours alone.
We’ll see you ever from below.
—poem sung during the opening credits (Poster: IMDb)
What an awesome film. The Irish setting is just so cool. There’s mystery here. There’s fairy tale wonder…and fear. And moving through the woods softly alongside mist and shadow—is a heartache long forgotten, an insidious presence, something wet stirring in the lake…
Loftus Hall—The setting for The Lodgers has a true history of mysterious hauntings. The hall is a large country house on the Hook peninsula, County Wexford, Ireland. Built on the site of the original Redmond Hall, Loftus is said by locals to be haunted by the devil and the ghost of a young woman. Learn more here: Loftus Hall (Wikipedia)
A family curse confines orphaned twins Rachel and Edwards to their home. Bound to the rules of a haunting childhood lullaby, the twins must never let any outsiders inside the house, must be in their rooms by the chime of midnight, and must never be separated from one another. Breaking any of these rules will incur the wrath of a sinister presence that inhabits the house and the grounds after dark.
Some reviews I read were just ridiculous. You know how I feel about silly, attention-grabbing critics who over assert their limited knowledge of what it means to be entertained by a genre film like The Lodgers. In all fairness I will gladly share reviews from both sides if I feel they are intelligent and seeking to promote the art rather than a mere point of view.
I liked these and agree wholeheartedly…
Jonathan Barken from Dread Central wrote:
“Delicately crafted, The Lodgers is a richly woven tapestry of classically inspired gothic horror. Smart, scary, and undeniably beautiful, it will no doubt be considered one of the pinnacles of its genre.”
Chris Alexander from ComingSoon.net wrote:
“There hasn’t been a more effective, disturbing and sensorially pleasing film of this kind since Alejandro Amenabar’s The Others and, like that masterpiece, O’Malley’s artful, lurid and meticulously orchestrated exercise in atmosphere, pretty misery, and dread seeps deep under your skin. And it stays there. For keeps.”
And Justin Lowe from The Hollywood Reporter wrote: “[The Lodgers is ] finely attuned, atmospheric filmmaking more likely to catch the attention of art house aficionados than… horror fans.”
I would add to Lowe’s words “art house aficionados” above “and lovers of the gothic, ghost stories, atmospheric dread, and ‘slow-building horror’”—none of which are negative in nature, but rather a bit more positive than being typed a mere “horror fan”—which implies we horror fans don’t care for the above and are rather only lovers of babysitter slasher flicks, the grotesque, boorish decapitations, and other body horrors (all of which we like as well, but still…).
More info on cast, plot, etc….
—Images, unless otherwise noted, are from Pinterest.