Movie Review: Girl House

@lcfremont peers in through the window at Girl House…

First time director Trevor Matthews delivers a slasher film that seems to have a comment on porn, violence and it’s possible connections, but I’m not entirely sure what it is. Written by Nic Gordon, Girl House is an online porn site where users can watch the women living within the house at all hours of the day. Though not required to engage in sexual acts, they will make a lot more money the more liberal they are with their bodies.

Our token brunette who has a good heart, but needs to pay for college tuition, decides to take up residence in Girl House and quickly attracts the attention of Loverboy. As we learn in the all too familiar horror movie intro, Loverboy was taunted by two young ladies when he was a wee lad and that immediately turned him into a woman hating murderer. Of course, as explained by the Ted Bundy quote at the beginning of the film, this isn’t really Loverboy’s fault and his future homicidal rampage through Girl House is definitely not his fault either.

Why? Because according to Ted Bundy, “I’ve met a lot of men who were motivated to commit violence. Every one of them was deeply involved in pornography. Porn can reach in and snatch a kid out of any house today. It snatched me out of mine.” And there you have it folks, words of wisdom about porn and violence from a notorious serial killer who didn’t even have the pleasure of living in this current age of digital porn. This quote is what begins our movie and, ultimately, sets the overall moral tone.

The first hour of the film is spent “developing” characters and subjecting us to numerous conversations about whether or not living in Girl House constitutes porn. If it does, you’re either a slut with self esteem issues or you’re a modern woman who is taking full advantage of this new, sexually open world where Sasha Grey ends up in a Soderbergh film. Every time one character, be it male or female, says something negative about porn or the Girl House site specifically, another character will tell them why they are wrong. This is all a bit confusing because the film can’t seem to decide which side of the aisle it lands on. This is truly a case of wanting to have your cake and eat it too.

Scene from Girl House
Ultimately, after a lot of grandstanding and cheering on women who choose to do what they wish with their bodies, all of our beautiful women are taken out by Loverboy. After realizing that one of the girls has a mean spirited post about him in the house, he dons his super ghetto, lame excuse for a woman hating killing outfit and marches directly to Girl House to dole out some completely undeserved homicidal rage.

For someone who moved really slowly up until now, Loverboy, played by the one name only Slaine,moves at a pretty impressive speed and this is one of the few nice things that I can say about this movie. It’s nice to see a slasher who actually propels themselves through gravity as though they have a mission, rather than just apathetically walking after screaming ladies. As is mandatory with such “complex” mental and emotional problems, Loverboy mutilates the face and hands of our first victim and you know what this dumb B does? She kills herself. Why? Because a beautiful woman is no good if she’s no longer beautiful. I’m quite certain that Ted Bundy would agree with me on this one.

Spoiler alert: if you have shown us your boobs, you are going to die and that leaves us with……the final girl who dances for the camera, but never shows the goods. It’s a scientific fact that the girl who chooses to keep her top on is also inherently clever enough to outsmart a serial killer and also tough enough to physically take him out. With multiple, let’s call them nods and not rip offs, to numerous horror films, Girl House is a giant jigsaw puzzle of every slasher that has come before it, but this one is set in a house where X rated content is streamed and I suppose that’s what makes it unique. I’d like to imagine that the filmmakers have buried a thoughtful comment on porn and the mass consumption of women somewhere deep, deep inside of the Girl House walls, but the mere fact that all of the women are vapid, throw away characters and one of them is even suffocated by a dildo, I find that very hard to believe. The only thing I’m having a harder time believing is the fact that I sat through this meandering social commentary that never decided what it really believed and, instead, tried to equally upset both views.

Girl House image
Pick a side Girl House!.
Is porn good or evil?
Does porn cause men to kill?
Are women who make a living via porn to be applauded or shamed?
If you had chosen a clear viewpoint, it would have been easier to decide a final thought, but mostly, all of this felt like a missed opportunity. Girl House, you could have been a fun and bloody movie, but you got too mired up in your own conflicted emotions about sex and violence.

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