The Haunting of Hill House on Netflix (Spoilers)

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for all your thoughts on the bent-neck lady, that ending, and why they definitely shouldn't do a second season

Number None, Monday, 22 October 2018 13:09 (two years ago) link

I just finished the first 2 episodes. Annabeth Gish! (this is really my only thought so far).

Yerac, Monday, 22 October 2018 13:56 (two years ago) link

i finishedthe whole thing last night & found the final episode a bit naff. first 2/3 of the final ep was ok, corny but i sort of liked everyone getting a moment; but the final third just went on and on and onnnn and the narration drove me up the wall

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 22 October 2018 14:32 (two years ago) link

It also leaned heavily on Huisman who is so clearly the cast's weak link

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Monday, 22 October 2018 14:46 (two years ago) link

It would have been SO satisfying, maybe even brilliant, for them to show us this elaborate happy ending, then show us that this was merely another level of manipulation the house was capable of - it even suggests it with Hutton's suicide. But it's hard to read the happy ending as anything but sincere thanks to the way it's scored and edited. Very frustrating.

That said, the middle stretch of this (around 4-6, maybe including 3) is maybe the best set of episodes of any Netflix original to date.

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Monday, 22 October 2018 14:54 (two years ago) link

My wife summed it up perfectly in the closing seconds of the final episode
“So... Hill House is good.”

Enough fantastic stuff throughout that I’m gonna just forget about the finale. “Two Storms” totally incredible.

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Monday, 22 October 2018 15:16 (two years ago) link

As hokey as Flanagan can be at times, his ability to construct horror narratives around characters you actually give a shit about is so refreshing

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Monday, 22 October 2018 15:20 (two years ago) link

It also leaned heavily on Huisman who is so clearly the cast's weak link

omg yes, he's the worst. and Steve was the least sympathetic one out of that whole broken family.

Not enough Carla Gugino imo.

Roz, Monday, 22 October 2018 15:25 (two years ago) link

i can only assume people keep casting Huisman in things but he just naturally comes across as a smarmy prick

Number None, Monday, 22 October 2018 15:30 (two years ago) link

something about his whispery speaking voice really bugged me too, too much of an obvious affectation where the rest of the adult cast's delivery feels totally natural

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Monday, 22 October 2018 15:32 (two years ago) link

agree on the ending. Thought it was way too saccharine (and the inversion of Jackson's words at the end was nauseating). Flanagan definitely has that tendency though c.f. the recently resurrected Before I Wake

That said, most of the first half was great and episodes 5 & 6 are definitely peak 2019 TV

Number None, Monday, 22 October 2018 15:35 (two years ago) link

or 2018 even...

time out of joint

Number None, Monday, 22 October 2018 15:36 (two years ago) link

He can also pull off sickeningly downbeat endings too, as in his first few movies.

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Monday, 22 October 2018 15:37 (two years ago) link

Huisman def weakest, I havent liked him in anything since he was in Nashville.

As much as I didnt love the final ep, what I did love was Hutton getting some v good camera time. I have always been a fan. Gugino too, she was stellar. Kind of wish they had given Annabeth Gish more to do throughout the series as well.

I thought the two kids that played Nell & Steve were so good. And frowny remote young Theo reminded me so much of myself at that age (right down to the Paula Abdul choreo).

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 22 October 2018 16:15 (two years ago) link

I actually had to google to see if young Theo was related to Keirnan Shipka (she's not)

Number None, Monday, 22 October 2018 16:17 (two years ago) link

yeah young Theo was great. even though they were too close in age, I really liked Henry Thomas and Tim Hutton as a pair.

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Monday, 22 October 2018 16:18 (two years ago) link

Between this and American crime story or whatever it was called, I have been mega enjoying all these damaged and greasy old Timothy Huttons

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Monday, 22 October 2018 16:47 (two years ago) link

The ending is terrible - the house is meant to be a deranged, corrupting force on people, and those that end up there are lost, tortured beings. it's not an afterlife day care. All of a sudden the threat of the house is handwaved away, as if it is 'what dreams may come' or some such. It just didn't make any sense - I still thought it was a great show, though.

Leaghaidh am brón an t-anam bochd (dowd), Monday, 22 October 2018 20:29 (two years ago) link

I want those 10 (?) hours back.

An Uphill Battle For Legumes (Capitaine Jay Vee), Monday, 22 October 2018 20:35 (two years ago) link

The scares were fun and great to see Hutton, Thomas and Gugino get relatively good roles to work with. The woman who played Nell was terrific but the little girl who played her was just bad. And I really could care less about the elder kids as damaged adults because, with the exception of Nell and Theo, they were plain unlikeable. It was a bit of a struggle but I hung out for the big payoff that just never happened. Once burned...

An Uphill Battle For Legumes (Capitaine Jay Vee), Monday, 22 October 2018 20:40 (two years ago) link

I found all the adults pretty sympathetic. Except for fuckin' Steven. I think he could have worked with a different actor, and if they'd done more with the family's financial stresses and made clearer that book revenues were keeping them afloat. (Finances were definitely a throughline, but I think they could have done more to implicate them all in monetizing their suffering rather than just having Steven be the asshole.)

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Monday, 22 October 2018 21:55 (two years ago) link

dowd otm about the ending & “afterlife daycare”

also the red room pay-off felt halfbaked. ok so it morphed depending on who was in it. cool. but then what? what does it mean, exactly? idk

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 00:27 (two years ago) link

Now I am wondering if I should commit any more hours to this.

Yerac, Tuesday, 23 October 2018 00:31 (two years ago) link

it’s still worth it imo

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 01:37 (two years ago) link

Yep.

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 02:04 (two years ago) link

(unless you're one of those "an iffy ending undoes any good that came before" types, which, idk how ppl like that ever enjoy horror)

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 02:06 (two years ago) link

lol otm

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 02:34 (two years ago) link

lol IF this had been horror. Instead, it felt like a sum total of 20 minutes of spooky stuff sprinkled throughout a bunch of endless sibling bickering

An Uphill Battle For Legumes (Capitaine Jay Vee), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 03:00 (two years ago) link

mr veg called it “the screaming & crying show”

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 03:21 (two years ago) link

As I said on the main TV thread, it's absolutely a melodrama with horror elements rather than the other way around. I will say a LOT of people (on social media etc.) do seem to find it v spooky, but movies stopped scaring me a long time ago so I'm not a great barometer for these things

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 03:31 (two years ago) link

it made me jump quite a few times & i found it mildly scary in places. no more or less scary than the Conjuring imo

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 03:41 (two years ago) link

To talk about stuff besides the ending: I feel like a big part of the Netflix model is making sure that there's a centerpiece sequence people talk about - Daredevil with its long-take fight scenes, for instance. But the end of "Bent-Neck Lady" and the long takes in "Two Storms" were genuinely impressive and even emotive in a way Netflix shit almost never is.

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Tuesday, 23 October 2018 04:08 (two years ago) link

just starting episode 2 and jesus stop trying to force the kid to see his dead grandma!

Toss another shrimpl air on the bbqbbq (ledge), Wednesday, 24 October 2018 18:20 (two years ago) link

The family seems to have a deep commitment to the idea that people should see the dead bodies of their loved ones...

Leaghaidh am brón an t-anam bochd (dowd), Wednesday, 24 October 2018 18:36 (two years ago) link

If I had a family member that was an embalmer, I would explicitly make it clear than I would not want them performing that task on me.

Yerac, Wednesday, 24 October 2018 18:52 (two years ago) link

It's odd because it's kind of treated like it's some universal part of grief. Ah well, WASPs gonna WASP, I guess.

Leaghaidh am brón an t-anam bochd (dowd), Wednesday, 24 October 2018 19:05 (two years ago) link

i have never been to an open casket funeral - really dont want to ever have to go to one imo

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Wednesday, 24 October 2018 19:44 (two years ago) link

No, me either.

Leaghaidh am brón an t-anam bochd (dowd), Wednesday, 24 October 2018 21:00 (two years ago) link

so the Dudleys' second kid, Abigail, she WAS real, right? I can't quite wrap my head around the fact that Luke kept saying he had an imaginary friend who was a little girl and nobody put two and two together that it was the Dudleys' kid. I guess maybe the Crains didn't know the Dudleys even had a kid until the scene when Mrs. Dudley talked to Mrs. Crain about it, but considering Mrs. Dudley was always around during the day and Luke was always yapping about this imaginary friend, you think at least she would have put it together.

evol j, Thursday, 25 October 2018 13:25 (two years ago) link

fwiw I liked the ending, even if it was indeed rather touchy-feely "Lost"-esque. so much horror nowadays resolves with EVERYONE dying brutally and meaninglessly that I was expecting the show to go that route.

evol j, Thursday, 25 October 2018 13:27 (two years ago) link

I don't think Luke ever called her imaginary, it was just their assumption. I have to say that was a nice little twist (brutal to watch a kid merrily gulp poison, though)

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Thursday, 25 October 2018 13:33 (two years ago) link

yeah, I was imprecise there, what I meant was that everyone assumed she was imaginary.

evol j, Thursday, 25 October 2018 13:34 (two years ago) link

Yep, they were all aware that there was a young girl that actually lived on the property and they never thought for a second Luke's friend might be real

It was both dumb and an incredibly obvious twist

Number None, Thursday, 25 October 2018 14:13 (two years ago) link

another thing that irked me was Shirley's one-night stand, the way it was just sort of tossed in at the 11th hour as a way to explain her being an asshole and more importantly to give her a reason to need redemption.

evol j, Thursday, 25 October 2018 19:51 (two years ago) link

yeah, that dude literally materialised out of nowhere

Number None, Thursday, 25 October 2018 20:05 (two years ago) link

yeah i think it could have been integrated better

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Thursday, 25 October 2018 20:09 (two years ago) link

I'm not going to read this whole thread since I'm only three episodes in but I think the casting in this is superb. They did an amazing job of not only finding people who actually look related to each other (at least the women) but also casting younger people who really do look like the older actors.

akm, Thursday, 25 October 2018 21:37 (two years ago) link

It seems to not be a universal opinion (to say the least), but I thought the casting and acting was excellent.

Leaghaidh am brón an t-anam bochd (dowd), Thursday, 25 October 2018 21:40 (two years ago) link

i agree except for stupid dumb Steve

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 26 October 2018 01:47 (two years ago) link

I think some of the kid acting was a little kid acting-y but that's more than forgivable; all the non-Huisman adults are great. it's kind of funny to see his previous leading ladies (Reaser, Gugino, Siegel) united as one unhappy family.

wayne trotsky (Simon H.), Friday, 26 October 2018 14:17 (two years ago) link

i never notice when accents are bad and it's for the best that i'm never told about it

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 16 November 2020 22:17 (one week ago) link

the ending isn't bad but after the climax ends the last episode just wanders through a long boring coda. they should've just added twenty minutes to episode 8

otherwise i found that very enjoyable, though: why was this set in the '80s

i also have yet to see hill house, which i'm gonna start right away

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 00:21 (one week ago) link

it's amazing how much i loved the gay shit until it became super corny and the entire fucking focus

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 00:25 (one week ago) link

yeah, incorrect central relationship for sure

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Thursday, 19 November 2020 00:46 (one week ago) link

I personally got a huge kick out of drunk henry vs evil henry but this does not seem to be universally agreed upon

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Thursday, 19 November 2020 00:48 (one week ago) link

oh i liked that episode a lot

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 00:52 (one week ago) link

amazed that no one at the framing device party was like "why did you tell that story in a super weird way"

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 00:54 (one week ago) link

I liked that "If you go back and watch the series again, in every episode there’s probably somewhere between eight and 10 ghosts that are just hidden in plain sight that we called no attention to but they’re there"

Dan S, Thursday, 19 November 2020 01:00 (one week ago) link

it is truly "shit moving in the background: the show"

i love it tbh

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 01:13 (one week ago) link

I totally didn't get the framing device. Like Flora wasn't like, who are you and why are you at my wedding? And why do parts of this story seem familiar. And the older version of the cook and older henry just being like, sure, tell this story, you know the one we made a big deal out of the kids not remembering, definitely no chance this will jog any memories.

dan selzer, Thursday, 19 November 2020 01:16 (one week ago) link

it was sooo silly

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 01:24 (one week ago) link

idk what the general reception of episode eight was but i kinda thought the diversion into the origins of the haunting was really well-done and at least two of the jump scares totally got me

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 01:27 (one week ago) link

like i basically loved this until the last 40 minutes, so much agonizing exposition just to convey that years have passed and yet the haunting persists

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 01:30 (one week ago) link

I would have liked ep 8 a lot better without the narration. hell, I'd have dug it more in full silent film mode, that would have been sick

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Thursday, 19 November 2020 02:03 (one week ago) link

yeah you’re right the narration is kinda overbearing

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 02:07 (one week ago) link

The narrator had an awful accent as well.

Set in the 80s so people were old in the framing device, also no mobile phones/google.

I mostly enjoyed it, the characters and story were decent. Nothing came close to the creepiness of the Bent Neck Lady, though.

chap, Thursday, 19 November 2020 09:55 (one week ago) link

This was daft but we stuck with it. The accents and clunky dialogue almost sunk the whole thing (in a lake); when Garth Merenghi gives the most convincing characterisation, you're in trouble. (Though even he was required to say "I couldn't do the math" or variations thereon, which was risible).

Michael Jones, Thursday, 19 November 2020 12:25 (one week ago) link

"I couldn't do the math" or variations thereon, which was risible

Yes! This massively bugged me as well and instantly made me think of this: https://coub.com/view/11skso

chap, Thursday, 19 November 2020 12:46 (one week ago) link

Set in the 80s so people were old in the framing device, also no mobile phones/google.

and so they could drop “tainted love” in the soundtrack. totally needless imo

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Thursday, 19 November 2020 13:34 (one week ago) link

glad to see Rahul Kohli is sticking around for Flanagan's next thing

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Thursday, 19 November 2020 13:42 (one week ago) link

Is he doing more Hauntings also?

chap, Thursday, 19 November 2020 13:47 (one week ago) link

none in the pipeline yet AFAIK but I'm sure Netflix is after him for more of them, anecdotally it seems to be one of their most popular "series"

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Thursday, 19 November 2020 13:53 (one week ago) link

lmao i don't know why i held off on hill house (well i do but it's for the very silly reason of loving the book so much that the extreme looseness of the adaptation made me suspicious of it) but it's phenomenal

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Sunday, 22 November 2020 03:41 (one week ago) link

Hill House is def better even if it falls apart even worse at the end than Bly Manor did

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Sunday, 22 November 2020 06:47 (one week ago) link

the middle stretch is just primo Flanagan, playing to all of his strengths

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Sunday, 22 November 2020 06:51 (one week ago) link

episode five was major

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Sunday, 22 November 2020 13:31 (one week ago) link

And six!

chap, Sunday, 22 November 2020 14:43 (one week ago) link

wow long takes galore in episode 6

the performances in hill house do make me wish the most talented member of the ensemble, victoria pedretti, weren't playing a character who's dead. guess that's why she's the lead in bly manor

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Sunday, 22 November 2020 16:18 (one week ago) link

The thing keeping me away from Bly Manor is that Hill House was so long and too filled with conversations of half-arsedly written dialogue and exposition. It could have been half the length, easily. And it needed more ghosts.

Vanishing Point (Chinaski), Sunday, 22 November 2020 17:35 (one week ago) link

Er, Bly Manor probably has more talking and fewer ghosts.

chap, Sunday, 22 November 2020 17:41 (one week ago) link

Bugger.

Vanishing Point (Chinaski), Sunday, 22 November 2020 17:45 (one week ago) link

And it sounds like you're really gonna hate his next series, No Ghosts, Just Talking

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Sunday, 22 November 2020 18:03 (one week ago) link

The Talky Ghost, and the big twist is he's not actually a ghost.

chap, Sunday, 22 November 2020 18:05 (one week ago) link

OK, a compromise - maybe some ghosts sitting about discussing the 'Like A Virgin' video?

Vanishing Point (Chinaski), Sunday, 22 November 2020 18:14 (one week ago) link

bly manor = perfectly splendid schmaltz. I liked hill house a lot more too, scarier and I thought the way they handled luke’s character was actually interesting

k3vin k., Sunday, 22 November 2020 18:46 (one week ago) link

oh my god i do not care about the ghost shirley fucked

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 23 November 2020 01:29 (six days ago) link

lmao as reported this blows

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 23 November 2020 01:57 (six days ago) link

lol I completely forgot about that plot stand for good reason

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Monday, 23 November 2020 02:13 (six days ago) link

i mean he wasn't even a ghost, he just haunted her or whatever, but god, so lame, i do not need her to have cheated on her husband to realize she has flaws, she's extremely sanctimonious, that's her character flaw, it's good enough

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 23 November 2020 02:19 (six days ago) link

The end was fine, good even, in terms of story but they fucked up the tone and way overexplained what you were supposed to take from it

i ultimately agree with this old chap post bc i feel like you could salvage something worthwhile from the last hour if you cut... so much of the dialogue

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 23 November 2020 02:21 (six days ago) link

one nice thing i'll say about the finale: abigail being real was a great choice

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 23 November 2020 02:24 (six days ago) link

yes! that was a nifty surprise

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Monday, 23 November 2020 02:33 (six days ago) link

I don’t know if this is true cause I haven’t seen enough of his works but Mike Flanagan seems Bad.At.Endings. Of five of his works I’ve seen, the only one that had an ending I legitimately liked was “Hush”.

Roz, Monday, 23 November 2020 12:14 (six days ago) link

I love Oculus' downer ending.

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Monday, 23 November 2020 13:03 (six days ago) link

He should have brought in Frank Darabont as a consultant on Gerald's Game to fix that awful King ending, though, for sure.

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Monday, 23 November 2020 13:05 (six days ago) link

I love Oculus' downer ending.

― it bangs for thee (Simon H.)

Didn't realise he did Oculus!

chap, Monday, 23 November 2020 13:24 (six days ago) link

I haven’t seen Oculus - will check that out. It’s the one with Karen Gillan yes?

Gerald’s Game was so good until those last five minutes, makes me genuinely angry just thinking about it lol

Roz, Monday, 23 November 2020 13:40 (six days ago) link

yep that's the one! iirc she has a memorable entrance

it bangs for thee (Simon H.), Monday, 23 November 2020 13:42 (six days ago) link

I never saw Gerald's Game but I will say I am deeply indebted to the book because it taught me that I didn't need to finish reading something if I hate it

DJP, Monday, 23 November 2020 14:53 (six days ago) link

Absentia ending was alright

or something, Monday, 23 November 2020 15:52 (six days ago) link


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