Doghouse Review: Who Let The Dogs Out?

June 10, 2009 by  
Filed under - Home, Film Reviews

DOGHOUSE: On General Release Friday 12th June, 2009

You might be forgiven for thinking the quality of British horror has taken a bit of a dip lately, what with the rather lacklustre Tormented and the god-awful Lesbian Vampire Killers. But as soon as you see Doghouse, you’ll find the words “plunge” or even “plummet” might be more appropriate.

Ladies and gentlemen, there is a film worse than Lesbian Vampire Killers and this is it.

Six lads having mid-life crises decide to visit a picturesque village in the middle of nowhere to get in touch with their masculinity. Apparently the village has women that outnumber the men five to one. Of course, nothing is as it seems and the boys are soon left fighting off an army of zombie women. So yeah, pretty much Lesbian Vampire Killers but with zombies instead of vampires. Full marks for originality guys. What’s next? Abandoned village spawns entirely female werewolf population?

It’s clearly trying to ape the success of the infinitely superior Shaun of the Dead (now the benchmark for British horror/comedy), but fails at every turn.

The presence of Danny Dyer in a film is like the red exes they used to daub on houses of plague victims. He plays wide-boy, cocky Laaaandan geezer types (basically himself) in every movie he’s been in. Does it really count as acting if you always play yourself? The only enjoyable moment of this film was when Dyer was tied to a chair and had one of his fingers sawn off and even that was ruined because he wasn’t offed there and then. Dyer aside, Stephen Graham and Noel Clarke should have known better. Both are fine actors and it’s mystifying they’re in such utter tripe.

The zombies are all one of a kind, drooling psychopaths (all par for the course) but none of them is memorable, frightening or show the inventiveness or charm found in any Romero film. Stay at home, cover your girlfriend in a mixture of corn flour and water and have her make gurgling noises and it’d be more unnerving, more entertaining and cheaper than going to watch this.

Half the characters are frankly unlikeable; you’ll find yourself wishing for their deaths at the earliest opportunity and the other half you’ll simply not care about, but more often than not, you’ll be sitting there clutching your head in your hands going “why oh why did I pay to see this?”

And when did it suddenly become okay to be sexist? Doghouse throws out derogatory comments left, right and centre but does it with an “it’s all a bit post-ironic, so it’s ok” smirk on its face which it thinks this justifies. It doesn’t: sexism is sexism.

This could just about be forgivable if the film was funny but not once did I even crack a smile. Not at the lame misogynistic jokes, not at the pitiful attempt at slapstick comedy, not at the bit where two of the lads dress up as women to fool the “zombirds”.

If this movie really were a doghouse it should reported to the RSPCA for cruelty to animals. If a friend even suggests you go and see this movie, I strongly recommend you cuff them round the head till they apologise.

Jez Sands

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