Ruff Draft

Haunting of Hill House hits Netflix scene
As the new generation of entertainment emerges, Netflix is taking over the streaming industry with multiple hit original movies and series. Newest to the spotlight, Netflix has released a 10 episode series titled “The Haunting of Hill House,” detailing the lives of a family of seven who move to the infamous Hill House with an intent to refurbish and flip it but end up obtaining more than they bargained for.

The overall plot of the series revolves around a house with a soul of its own, haunting the family with the ghosts of former residents while they live in and outside of the house. The storyline of the show is shown through a series of flashbacks, anecdotes and scenes from their present day lives; This made the timeline somewhat hard to follow if you are one who stops and starts shows instead of watching straight through. However, out of the episodes some specifically focus on certain characters and their afflictions, which we discover are all rooted in the house.

The acting in the show, despite the actors not being well known, is very thorough and impressive. Anything in the horror genre is typically seen as a hard role to play but all of the performances were done well, particularly the mother, Olivia Crain played by Carla Gugino and the oldest son, Steven Crain played by Michiel Huisman.

Despite the genre being classified as horror, the show itself would better be summed up as merely creepy. There were some scary moments but nothing more extreme than a simple nightmare or a little kid’s monster under the bed. The theme of horror can better be represented in the psychological trauma that resulted from their previous paranormal experiences.

Much of the show’s conflict stems from the paranormal experiences surrounding the mother. The house and its former residents are more drawn to Olivia, giving her strange “dreams” and pulling her into their realm of being. The show never makes it clear exactly what happened to the residents other than that they died and are somehow still present in the mansion.

In addition, the set and special effects added to the show tremendously. The mansion, which we seem to continuously find new corners of, is extravagantly layed out and decorated but is not too confusing. The special effects used for the paranormal scenes made them that much more believable. Another thing that caught my eye was the lighting used in different scenes, they used light and color well to convey the mood of the scenes and the characters.

Despite the slightly confusing nature of the show, it kept me throughly engaged to the point that I wouldn’t want to stop watching. The use of different timelines and well rounded characters keeps watchers engaged throughout the show. Overall, “The Haunting of Hill House” can definitely be classified as a Netflix original based on its production value but it is still well worth the watch.

Sydney Varner, Santa Fe Editor in Chief

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