Starring The Hunger Games’ Katniss Everdeen, Jennifer Lawrence, and My Soul To Take’s Max Thieriot, House At The End Of The Street tells a story of seventeen year old Elissa who falls in love with a troubled orphan who lives next to the gorgeous home she and her mom recently moved into. After her divorce, Elissa’s mom, Sarah (Elisabeth Judson Shue) decided to move to a small, rural town and into a beautiful home, and took (or dragged) her daughter with her. Elissa is seventeen and doesn’t have much of a choice but move with her mom, leave her band, and transfer schools. She’s the typical angsty type, as many girls of her age are, being part of a newly-broken family. She finds connection with the sad and brooding Ryan Jacobson who lives next door in a creepy house, who, like her, longs a happy family. Ryan was all that’s left of the Jacobsons. His parents were mercilessly killed by his younger sister Carrie-Ann, whose brain was damaged and made her mentally ill due to an accident Ryan is very self-remorseful about. Opposite of what the whole town has been nagging about (and Sarah fears), the young Jacobson is absolutely tame and in fact very likable as Elissa notes. To Elissa, he’s just another kid who’s part of a very sad story, as her. But there was more to it she discovers, as the story builds up to its climax towards the end.
The film has all the elements you expect from a thriller: mystery, subtlety, surprise. The sadness Ryan has creates apathy, and much of it can be attributed to Thieriot’s portrayal. The prologue is pretty straightforward. You see a young girl walking around with a pick at the middle of the night and killing her parents in their sleep is another girl who is either possessed or mentally ill, the question more is, why did she do what she did that night. The unraveling was simple, many details were revealed at the early part of the story, almost to a point where it seems that there’s nothing more to be excited about, and the fact that there indeed still is, is comforting. The twist was modestly delivered.
I didn’t expect so much out of this film. I knew it would be predictable, and it really is. I must say though that cinematography isn’t bad. Shots were decent. The action scenes were fairly exciting. Lawrence’s did a good job portraying her young, angry yet passionate character. This film is written by David Loucka, directed by Mark Tonderai, and also features Lawrence’s beautiful singing voice.