This wasn’t a perfect movie, but I liked it a lot anyway. The storyline is compelling on its own, but in this movie the cast really sells it.
There are a lot of jump scares in this one, but they don’t feel cheap. They’re placed perfectly so that the tension is already built up when they get you — meaning I fall for it every time.
I liked that the partial found footage aspect along with the “inspired by actual events” aspect provided some structure to the plot without acting as a crutch. The house was necessarily claustrophobic during the climactic scenes and the camera wasn’t overly shaky during the “recorded” scenes so the medium worked in this case. It also meant there was little room for overly dramatic background music, which was nice.
Really though, Olivia Cooke’s Jane Harper is what makes this film so great. She was thoroughly convincing and scary until the very end. Jared Harris and the rest of the cast (mostly unknown to me) were excellent in support, but this was Jane’s movie. And because Olivia Cooke sold it so well, I was really glad that it was.
I have some issues with the pacing of this one, but not enough to dislike it overall. This is an interesting, well acted scary story that I’d recommend pretty broadly.