Movie Review: “Lair” (A Night of Horror International Film Festival)

November 22, 2021

Written by John Doe

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You’ll rarely find a character that you can’t wait to see get his as much as you will with paranormal researcher/exploiter Steven Caramore (Corey Johnson) in the U.K. feature Lair. As if being responsible for his business partner Ben’s (Oded Fehr) slaughtering of his wife and child, Caramore then sets up shop in a London apartment building, outfitting one flat with allegedly cursed objects while rigging up cameras in a neighboring one to watch what happens to an unsuspecting family in the first flat. 

The vacationing family in question brings their own personal demons into the mix — lots of arguing, bickering, bruised egos, and teen rebellion — and really they should have demanded a refund on their vacation rental as soon as Caramore told them — on their second day of the stay — that he placed a cursed doll in their flat, a toy to which little Lily (Lara Mount) took an instant liking. But Lily and her high-strung mother Maria (Aislinn De’Ath), ill-tempered teen sister Joey (Anya Newall), and recently divorced Maria’s girlfriend Carly (Analla Wallace) all stay put. And in a horror movie, you know that spells big trouble. That big trouble is one of the highlights of Lair, with some wonderfully creepy scenes mixed in with solid scare sequences and nicely rendered gore effects. 

Writer/director Adam Ethan Crow serves up several intriguing ideas, but leaves viewers with a few questions, as well, which I won’t bring up here so as to avoid spoilers. Overall, Lair offers a good share of eeriness and some solid performances that balance out occasional scenery chewing, making for a watch that is entertaining throughout, especially for fans of supernatural cinema.

Lair screened as part of Australia’s A Night of Horror International Film Festival , which ran online from October 18–31, 2021. 

Lair comes to Digital & VOD November 9th, 2021 in North America from 1091.

 

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