Director Brian Avenet-Bradley has stayed under the radar for the majority of his career, but he has had some success with Ghost of the Needle and Dark Remains. For his latest endeavour, Echoes Of Fear, he brought in his wife (Laurence Avenet-Bradley) to co-write the film. Those who co-write together, stay together… or something.
The film sees Alysa inheriting a house from her late grandfather. However, due to the cost of upkeep, she and her boyfriend Brandon decide to sell it, after some much-needed DIY. Unfortunately, Brandon is only able to stay and help out on weekends, which results in Alysa staying at the house by herself for the majority of the week.
Being left alone in a house you aren’t used to can make anyone feel uneasy, but for Alysa, the things she sees and hears may be more than just a figment of her imagination. In fact, a tradesman ends up getting spooked away whilst in one of the crawlspaces in the house. With the help of her friend Steph, and neighbour David by her side, they try and uncover what is haunting the house. However, the answer to that question may put them all in grave danger.
The initial bulk of the film follows a typical haunted house plot, including the usual camera angles and sound choices. Inanimate objects move, lights flicker and turn off, eery looking shadows, etc. This all escalates for the first hour until the appearance of the apparition starts to occur.
It’s at this point that the movie starts to become interesting. Due to an intense scare, Alysa flees to the comfort of a local hotel with Brandon. However, she then finds out that Brandon is completely money-driven and has minimal interest in her safety. Also, she discovers that the strange visions and apparitions have followed her from the house. Determined to eradicate the house from the demonic presence, and to ensure her grandfather’s spirit has been laid to rest, she returns to the house with Steph. What they find, however, is far from a typical haunting.
The craftmanship of the first hour is a credit to both Avenet-Bradleys. While the first hour brings nothing new to the table of haunted house movies, their delivery and structure make it so you still feel startled and caught off guard, even when you can guess how the story will unfold.
Echoes Of Fear received many awards, including Best Supernatural Horror Feature, while on its festival run. Its physical release will be on October 16th, 2019. If you’re looking for a house haunting movie which feels familiar, yet new and exciting at the same time, then definitely give Echoes Of Fear a watch.