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Parents' Guide to

The Beach House

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Eerie, chilling, timely zombie/pandemic movie.

Movie NR 2020 88 minutes
The Beach House Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 4 parent reviews

age 14+

Okay for a Younger audience if they don’t get scared easily

Good movie
age 17+

Too scary

R: horror-related images of zombie violence and moments of disturbing terror.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (4 ):
Kids say (4 ):

Wisely avoiding wordy explanations or long setups, this eerie, timely chiller takes a slow-burn approach, simply observing its characters and springing its shocks naturally, without announcing them. The debut feature of writer-director Jeffrey A. Brown, The Beach House has confidence in its ability to create strange little tensions out of ordinary moments. It takes a while before anything supernatural happens, but the character interactions themselves are enough to make viewers feel on edge right away. What's left unspoken is frequently more powerful than what's said, such as the relationship tensions between Emily and Randall and whatever personal demons Jane appears to be fighting.

When the trouble does actually start, Brown doles it out in a way that makes it feel like it's happening organically. He doesn't play the audience like a piano or ramp up scares with percussive crashes. A character saying "I think I'll go for a swim" turns into a jaw-dropping jolt. A garbled voice on a staticky police radio is mostly inaudible, except for one chill-inducing sentence: "It's not fog." Perhaps most impressive is the fact that The Beach House is technically a zombie movie, but the zombies are rarely shown. This movie understands that zombies in themselves are no longer scary. But what's behind them, what causes them, can be absolutely terrifying.

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