Rebecca Hall gives layered performance in new thriller ‘the night house’

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Talented… Hall plays ghostly Beth (Image: nc)

So it’s fitting that the hugely talented British actress delivers an award-worthy performance in a run-of-the-mill haunted house movie here.

She plays high school teacher Beth who lives in a dreamy lake house built by her loving and, she thought, perfectly normal architect husband Owen (Evan Jonigkeit). That was until he rowed to the middle of the lake in the middle of the night and blew his brains out with a gun she didn’t even know he owned.

Honoring a long tradition of film widows, Beth spends her evenings drinking and watching grainy home movies of happier times.

Then, after too many inexplicable bumps in the night, she begins to wonder if she’s really all alone.

While going through Owen’s belongings, she discovers that he was leading a double life. There are photos of mysterious women on his computer, sinister drawings in his notebooks, and dusty books about the occult hidden in his office.

Hall plays a layered performance as a woman caught in a maelstrom of anger, fear and sadness.

There are some serious jump scares, but director David Bruckner can’t keep up with the horror. Shower scenes, ghostly shadows and mysterious footprints lose their power in the lingering and increasingly silly second half of the film.

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