Horror movie lovers can determine if a movie is going to be a classic before the movie is even over. The Exorcist. Nightmare on Elm Street. The Changeling. Robert Ebert and his questionable taste didn’t decide that. We did. From mainstream movies to indie flicks, our people know where it’s at.
So allow me to introduce you to a little gem called We Are Still Here. It’s amazing. The acting is terrible. The writing isn’t that great. The plot is nonsensical. Somehow, it just works.
Here’s the rundown.
Paul and Anne (who makes a better Barb, probably because that’s her real name, so that’s what I’m going to call her) are a super simple, not-much-to-talk-about couple who have recently moved from their hometown in an attempt to start over following the death of their son. Barb is very emotional and upon moving into this centuries-old house, tells Paul that she can feel the presence of their son and that she believes he’s followed them to that house.
Paul is like “Barb, no he didn’t, he’s dead” and his responses continue in this cadence for the duration of the movie.
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It’s the best.
So after a bunch of not-very-weird things happening, Barb contacts her hippie psychic friend, Mae, and asks her to come for a visit but also so she can conjure up her late son. Mae is like “sure” but Paul is like “god damnit”.
Mae and her husband, Jacob, arrive and they all go to dinner where naturally the entire town is also having dinner. The 4 of them walk in and the entire town stares at them cause they’re the new owners of “that” house. They notice but ignore it like good unsuspecting victims. Meanwhile, Barb’s friend Mae’s son is on his way to the house with his girlfriend, and now the shit is really about to go down.
Mae’s son gets offed and his girlfriend drives away frantically for help and then SHE gets offed. The foursome get back home and are like “hmmm, I guess the kids aren’t here yet.” Parents didn’t smother their kids back then so they’re just like “oh well”.
So the next day Mae tells Barb “let’s do a seance to contact your son” and Paul is like “pfft”. But then Mae is like “actually, sike, there’s something evil in here so no seance”.
Instead of conjuring the dead, the women go to the grocery store. After they leave Mae’s husband Jacob is like “seance time!” and Paul is like “pfft”. Jacob is like “Paul, you need to believe it or it won’t work” to which Paul’s attitude rolls its eyes. They’re doing the seance and then Jacob starts acting weird and Paul is like “this is lame”.
As it turns out, it’s not lame, Jacob has managed to get himself possessed. The wives get home and Paul is like “so yeah, Jacob played with ghosts and now he’s crazy”.
Photo by: imdb.com
Then Mae is like “it’s Dagmar (the thing that’s haunting the house)!” and Paul is like “oh FFS”. Then Jacob stabs his own eye out and Paul is like “ok, time to bounce”.
Before they can leave the town’s people show up because the ghosts of the house are feeding and they need to make sure the victims are the owners of the house and not the rest of the town. The leader of the group knocks on the door and like a dumb-dumb, Mae answers it resulting in her timely death. Barb is like “he killed her!” and Paul is like “I was here when it happened”.
So Paul and Barb run from the townspeople and then (plot twist!) the ghost family (not just Dagmar) that has apparently been wreaking havoc on the town is like “you know what, fuck this town, but Paul is cool” and kills everyone except Paul and Barb. After everyone is dead Paul is like “sup” and the ghost dad is like “sup” and then the ghost family is like “k, bye” and it’s over.
Paul is the reason this movie is watchable. I don’t know if he’s a terrible actor or if his role was meant to convey an attitude of “over it” but it just makes me laugh. Terror takes over this family and he can’t be bothered by any of it. Which, by the way, is the person you want by your side in a crisis – clearly. Paul’s not here for your shit, my shit, or anybody’s shit. And you know what, I’m here for that.
We Are Still Here is streaming on Shudder.