Housebound, film review: Spoof horror movie is lifted by dry humour and gory special effects

(18) Gerard Johnstone, 107 mins. Starring: Morgana O'Reilly, Rima Te Wiata
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A fairly standard spoof haunted-house movie is lifted by its wonderfully dry humour and gory special effects, including exploding heads, similar to those in Peter Jackson's debut feature Bad Taste (1987), also New Zealand-made.

The film has a memorable heroine in young delinquent Kylie (Morgana O'Reilly) whose default reaction to cops, her parents, authority figures or ghosts in the woodwork is to tell them to "f**k off".

Her Coronation Street-watching mum (Rima Te Wiata) is, likewise, a memorable comic creation: a fussing figure who never becomes too perturbed, whatever bloody mayhem is going on around her.

The director Gerard Johnstone has a knack for combining horror and slapstick, not least in a bloody scene late on in which a washing basket plays a prominent part.