Directed and written by Scott Eggleston (who directed the TV series Midnyte and two shorts, Invader and Collection Day) before this. He’s also the creator of the YouTube channel The Frugal Filmmaker.
Russ (Chris Levine) and his wife Jennifer (Maddison Bullock) have just moved into a house that’s a definite fixer-upper, so they probably had to deal with a lot of back and forth with their lender, probably not having a traditional mortgage but instead an FHA 203(k) loan, which covers a home that needs repairs up to the tear-down as long as the foundation remains in place. I don’t know, maybe they got a HomeStyle loan, which is Fannie Mae conventional loan that limits the renovation amount to 50% of the as-completed value (the difference is that the 203(k) has no maximum as long as the After Repair Value is under the FHA maximum loan amount.
I’m telling you all of these mortgage and loan facts because in case you ever wondered why no one leaves a home that they know is haunted, in 2022 it’s very simple. Once you buy a home, you’re pledging your future to that property. This is really true with any loans that cover a home that needs construction or renovation. After all, if you abandon the home — you can’t tell prospective buyers about the ghosts — you’re about to lose everything. I mean, yes, you also might die or be possessed, but money is tight.
Russ is also a paranormal researcher, so you’d think he’d have some kind of demonic home inspection, but perhaps he was just too excited about the property. There’s one major reason why: Jennifer has a terminal illness and he thinks the house can cure her.
Who cares if the last owners just disappeared?
Seeing as how this comes from someone who calls himself The Frugal Filmmaker, you already know that the budget is less than a tank of gas, but then again, that tanks of gas could pay for Heaven’s Gate by the end of this year.
Instead of big budget CGI, there are two great performances by the leads, as they have to carry so much of this movie. It does have some pages from an alchemist’s notebook and if I’ve learned anything, it’s to never read notes from scientists or magicians that you find in a new house. While this movie doesn’t have anyone from a reel to reel tape, you shouldn’t play that either. Just be fine with not knowing and not dealing with demons.
There are some fun twists in this and it does a lot that works despite its budget instead of worrying about what won’t work with the budget. After all, ideas don’t cost anything and this movie has a really intriguing premise. It also spends plenty of time letting us get to know the leads and care about them before the horrific moments happen.