It’s 10:16 pm
During the recent Wild Eye Week that was held on YouTube,one of the reviews that caught my eye was the the review of “The House On Cuckoo Lane” by our friend Joe aka TheHORRORman. His review was full of energy and passion and he said in his opinion that “House” was the best Wild Eye film he had watched.
Now that is saying something because Joe has watched a LOT of Wild Eye movies as his personal collection of their films is huge. So of course I was very curious about what could make this movie so awesome. So a quick email to the mighty Wild Eye Releasing crew and soon the cheetah and I were on our couch watching “The House On Cuckoo Lane”.
Shaun Costello (David Hinds) is a huge movie fan. He collects films from all over the world. But Shaun isn’t a rich man and he is very selective on what he wants to buy. He enjoys hunting for rare films and he also prowls the used movie stores and boot sales always on the lookout for a rare treasures within his budget.
But now Shaun has suddenly got the urge to find the very rare and very hard to get film called “The House On Cuckoo Lane”which supposedly is both haunted and a snuff film. He starts to look for it in earnest both through horror magazines and on the internet. He asks his fellow collecting friends but they either say its a myth or its beyond his price range. His best friend at first discourages Shaun from looking for it but then mentions a contact named The Hawk (Jamie Richardson) who may have a lead.
Shaun then discovers a possible copy of “Cuckoo”being sold in Canada and calls to inquire about it only to be told it had been a “mistake” and the collector doesn’t have it.
Shaun is now having problems sleeping because his obession with getting “Cuckoo”is now growing. He makes contact with The Hawk who tells him to come over and then proceeds to tell Shaun to forget about finding the movie and shares with a little of its background. Shaun is a little pissed off of having his time wasted and returns home no closer then he was before about getting “Cuckoo”.
Shaun’s girlfriend is getting concerned and tries to talk Shaun off getting the movie but he has the fever now and he is going to get “Cuckoo”.
That night Shaun has his most vivid dream yet,he dreams he KNOWS where a copy of the movie is and he gets up and drives to the place he sees in his dreams.
Sure enough,he indeed finds a copy of a old battered VHS tape in an abandoned home that says “The House On Cuckoo Lane”. Shaun takes the tape and goes home and back to bed.
He wakes up both thinking he was just dreaming and also knowing he really has his copy of “Cuckoo”. He puts the tape in and the movie starts playing showing different images of people with animal masks over their heads and people dying by various ways. We then see the last owner of the tape who committed suicide over the opening credits.
From then,the movie completely takes over Shaun’s life…..so much so that his girlfriend leaves him and he shuns his friends. It appears that each time that Shaun watches “Cuckoo”,the movie is always different. As Shaun sanity’s starts to slip away,he seeks out the one person who may be able to help him…..The Hawk.
Wow……so this is a hell of a ride. When I heard of the plot,I recalled two other films that were like this….John Carpenter’s “Cigarette Burns” from the “Masters Of Horror” series and “The Ninth Gate” which starred Johnny Depp. Both were excellent films and full of suspense and thrills. But what made “The House On Cuckoo Lane”so much more interesting was it speaks to the average film collector.
In both “Cigarette Burns” and “The Ninth Gate”,rich and powerful men were willing to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for their prizes. Shaun was willing to pay 1,000 dollars for a copy Cuckoo,not a lot of money for some but a fortune to others. And before you laugh at that,let me give you an example. On Amazon right now,people are willing to pay 400.00 dollars for a boxed set of Gamera movies!! And I’m talking those old crusty Japanese movies that we used to watch growing up! There are die-hard collectors who don’t care that you can buy various copies of these films for as little as a dollar or a BluRay 3 film collection of the newest Gamera movies for 10.00 at Target!!
I think David Hinds,who also co-wrote this story with Ross Bradley,had his finger on the pulse of the film collector in terms of what some will pay for that “one”film. “The House On Cuckoo Lane” also tips its hat to “Ringu” with its eerie and bizarre images including showing all the latest victims who have owned the film. The cover of the DVD I got seemingly doesn’t fit the movie but after watching it,I disagree,I think the cover fits perfectly but it also may have put off some buyers due to its very graphic nature.
My only complaint is that I wish the pacing had been a bit better and we would have gotten more screen time with The Hawk being that he is so critical to the story.
While I can’t say this is my favorite Wild Eye film,it is most certainly Top 10 and we think its bloody brilliant. The story is fresh,the acting is solid and the images are very effective,”Cuckoo” is a must have for any horror fan who wants to see something different. One last thing……there are a LOT of great filmmakers and actors in Great Britain/Scotland/Ireland and I enjoy watching their films very much.