Whether it’s good or bad, Uruguayan director Gustavo Hernández’s The Silent House should be commended for the idea and effort alone. The film is about a father and daughter working on a boarded up house, only to hear strange noises from the basement. Scary stuff ensues.
Not the most original concept, sure. But then again, as has been demonstrated on a couple of different occasions, there’s something great about taking a standard concept like that and injecting new life into it. Oddly, the best recent examples have all been low-budget affairs that have been incredibly well done, innovative, and scary as hell. I’m speaking of films like The Descent, Paranormal Activity, and [Rec].
Well, Hernández is taking the simple haunted house story and trying something pretty radical. The film was shot using a handheld camera and uses only the actual light on the sets (from flashlights, lanterns, candles, etc.).
Oh, and it’s done in a single take. Seriously. A single, 79 minute take. God only knows how many times they had to scrap the whole thing and start over. It must have been a hell of a process to nail it — I mean hell… what if lead actress Florencia Colucci flubbed her lines 75 minutes in? The mind, it boggles. It must have required a great deal of random improvisation and working around any stumbles — both literal and figurative. For film nerds, that in and of itself is reason to see it.
Anyway, here’s the trailer for The Silent House: