The Horror Asylum

Sign Up   Forgot Password? 
11,660 horror articles & features | 6,975 horror movies | 1,565 horror reviews | 1,333 giveaways hosted | 226 delicious interviews Established in 2001  
The Horror Asylum
  Horror News   Reviews   Giveaways   Interviews
Movies | TV | DVDs | Books | Games Movies | DVD | Books | Games Just Added | Ending Soon Just Added | Archives
Home About Enquiries Submissions Advertising Premium Feeds Cookies


The 12th Annual Salt City Horror Fest Returns to New York this April Death By Sport: Surprise Sporting Goods That Kill Craig Rees and Keeley Hazell Haunted in 'Whispers' - OUT 21 March The Devil is Real as New 'Holy Terror' Trailer Makes its Debut
Horror-on-Sea 2017: Seaside Horror Warms up Winter Twisted Love Triangle Campaign 'Nicole, her Ex & the Killer' Kicks Off Frozen Fear: Horror With a Little Extra Chill How Horror Games Give Us The Fright We're Looking For

WIN My Father Die on DVD
WIN My Father Die on DVD
WIN The Beaster Bunny on DVD
WIN The Beaster Bunny on DVD
WIN a copy of ANTIBIRTH on DVD
WIN a copy of ANTIBIRTH on DVD
WIN Fright Night on Blu-ray
WIN Fright Night on Blu-ray

The People Under the Stairs
Buy from Buy from

The People Under the Stairs (1991)

movie | Movie Details
Images, Posters, News
| Comments
Have your say

Plot Summary:
"Trapped inside a fortified home owned by a mysterious couple, an impoverished young boy is suddenly thrust into a nightmare. Quickly learning the true nature of the house's homicidal inhaitants, the boy battles against sadistic security devices, befriends an elusive and abused young girl and finally learns the secret of the creatures deep within the house."

Reviewer: Ben Aslett @horrorasylum
Review Date: 31 October 2001 My Rating: out of 5


# The People Under The Stairs, one of the more recent outings for Wes Craven, sees him directing one of, if not the, most bizarre films of his to date. This film is indeed the personification of surreal. I'm not too sure what Craven was smoking when he was sat in the directors chair but it made for some interesting viewing.

The problem with The People Under The Stairs is that the audience, and to an extent the film, doesn't know whether it is supposed to be entirely serious or slightly tongue-in-cheek. The film does have a few genuinely scary parts, mainly involving the people under the stairs. The aspects of this film that border on the humorous side are the people that own the house, only referred to as Man and Woman and their Dog.

Man and Woman are, to put it nicely, a few aspirins short of a medicine cabinet. If you thought that the Texas Chain Saw family was weird you ain't seen nothing yet. These two however are weird on a different scale. Man, played brilliantly by Everett McGill, is a person who is just a little too protective of things. He also likes to deal with his problems, mainly Fool, with a rather ominous shotgun. Woman, played by Wendy Robie, is a cruel lady. From threatening her child, Alice, to setting the dog on any intruder that dares enter. As the saying goes 'hell hath no fury like a woman's scorn'.

The People Under The Stairs is basically a big adventure. A big adventure that is strictly confined to the restraints of the house. Since ninety percent of this film is set inside the house it still manages to keep its length. Fool - Brandon Adams - is roped into getting in the house to find some gold coins. Le Roy, his partner in crime is then subjected to the family dog. First off I'd like to say that Fool is one of a very few kid characters that doesn't annoy me. And second, never has a dog had such an exceptional role in a film. In The People Under The Stairs the dog is the main source for much of the comedy. For such a ferocious dog he can be really quite comical. The best part is when Woman feeds him a human hand of which he starts to eat. Then he hears a sound, and as dogs do, bolts his head up. Sure enough, sticking out of his mouth is a finger. Then when the dog is chasing Alice through the house a trapdoor drops and the canine is subjected to a two-storey slide to the kitchen where he promptly gets up as if nothing has happened.

When Fool finally manages to get out of the house, even after Alice has told him 'no-one gets out' the film appears to be over. The boy has survived the evil adults and will now live happily ever after. Wrong. In true Wes Craven style Fool is sent back for more. This starts the anti-climax of the film. The adventure starts again but most of it doesn't seem necessary. There are some more laughs, especially at Man's hunting suit, but that is all there is. The only part that was needed was the setting free of 'the people...' This does bring a spectacular explosion (which includes all the money they had collected being brought down in a shower) for a finale. One worrying thing is though, with all 'the people...' wandering amongst the rest of the street, no one seems to notice. Money does that to you I suppose.

'#ccc'>OVERALL SUMMARY This film is defiantly one of Cravens more bizarre tales and for that reason it didn't have good PR. This film is Addams Family meets Evil Dead with a kid for a hero. Some would think that this is not a very good film but it is full off adventure and is an acceptable watch. If you are a fan of Craven's then check it out, if not, check it out anyway; you might be surprised.

Blood and Guts: Comments


Not Registered?
Sign up for FREE >>

There are currently no comments.
Why not have your say!?


Whispers Movie Review


Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy's Revenge, A Movie Review

Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy's Revenge, A

Suspiria Movie Review


The Others Movie Review

The Others

Pod Movie Review


Ouija: Origin of Evil Movie Review

Ouija: Origin of Evil

Inn of the Damned Movie Review

Inn of the Damned

Disaster L.A. Movie Review

Disaster L.A.

Horrors of the Black Museum Movie Review

Horrors of the Black Museum

Visions Movie Review


Dont Breathe Movie Review

Dont Breathe

Holidays Movie Review


Demonic Movie Review


Blair Witch Movie Review

Blair Witch

Darling Movie Review



WIN My Father Die on DVD WIN The Beaster Bunny on DVD
WIN a copy of ANTIBIRTH on DVD WIN Fright Night on Blu-ray
Now you can Watch your favorite Horror Movies using the Official ShowBox App


An Interview with Jason Blum
Jason Blum