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Saturday, September 12, 2020

Review: The Owners

Director: Julius Berg
Screenplay: Mathieu Gompel, Julius Berg, and Geoff Cox
Year: 2020

A group of friends prepares to get inside the house of a couple of old wealthy folks under the presumption that they have a safe with money. When the old couple leaves the house, the friends enter and find the safe but cannot open it. Determined not to go empty-handed, the group decides to stay and wait for the old couple to terrorize them until they give the code to the safe.

As expected, things don’t go according to plan. The old couple is not easily frightened, and they remain suspiciously relaxed amidst the friends’ threats. The tension ends up getting the best of the group of criminals, and what should have been a simple robbery ends up in a messy bloodbath. 

Once the old couple and the group of criminals meet each other, it is clear that the couple does not feel threatened, and to a certain extent, it feels like they are playing with the robbers. This feeling is effective thanks to the superb acting from the whole cast, but mainly from Sylvester McCoy (“The Hobbit”) and Rita Tushingham (“The Bed Sitting Room”) as the old couple. They always make you feel like there is something else underneath and give subtle hints towards this. 

Besides the great acting, in this film from director Julius Berg ("La ForĂȘt"), the gore and practical effects used to achieve them stands out. These scenes come out unexpectedly without any sort of warning before reaching them, taking by surprise the viewer who does not know this beforehand. The level of detail is impressive and makes the pain travel through the screen. 

What doesn’t allow “The Owners” to be a better movie is how worn out is this idea of a failed home invasion where tables turn. Initially, the whole concept is flashy, but in the third act, it goes so over the top that ends up being silly. Besides this, the script by Mathieu Gompel, Julius Berg, and Geoff Cox ("High Life") is extremely predictable. 

“The Owners” accomplished to be entertaining throughout its full duration, where the acting and the well-crafted practical effects for the gore stand out. The gore makes its way unexpectedly and is so realistic that it feels painful just to watch it. However, it offers a worn down story that we have seen a number of times in horror movies, and the plot is absurd and predictable.

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