THE EVIL NEXT DOOR is a new Swedish horror movie (org. title Andra sidan). It’s a fairly classic horror story that might seem familiar. Still, the movie is excellent when it comes to setting an eerie vibe. The story just lets it down quite a bit. Read our full The Evil Next Door movie review here!

THE EVIL NEXT DOOR is a new horror movie from Sweden (org. title Andra sidan which literally translates into “The other side”). The plot of this horror movie does come across as being very familiar because much of the story is almost borrowed directly from other horror movies. Particularly popular horror movies from the US and Japan.

It’s not a complete copycat production in any sense. It’s just that there is constantly the sense that you’ve seen it all before. Also, the actual story itself just isn’t very strong. Fortunately, the eerie and creepy vibe of this movie works so damn well that you can almost excuse that. But only almost.

Continue reading our The Evil Next Door movie review below.

Would you turn on the damn light already?!

As already mentioned, the vibe of this Swedish horror movie is full of creepiness which works deliciously well. It’s just rather unfortunate that much of this creepy vibe comes from the fact that the characters in The Evil Next Door seem extremely reluctant to just turn on the damn light.

Sure, it works to have many scenes in the dark – and you can actually see what’s going on. It just gets old, real fast. And a while later it becomes irritating.

I mean, who the hell would opt to not turn on the lights when something goes bump in the night? Just let the damn lightbulb bust or a fuse break. Anything but having the characters choose not to turn on the light.

This might seem like a small pet peeve, and maybe it is, but only to a point. Because what happens is the simple fact that you are breaking the illusion for us viewers. We’re left thinking: This is just ridiculously unrealistic. In a horror movie with supernatural elements, we should not be questioning realism because of everyday abnormal behavior that sticks out like a sore thumb.

The Evil Next Door – Horror Movie Review

Great casting for a horror movie

No matter the irritation provided by the lack of logic in the story (which included a reluctance to turn on the light and a sort of non-ending), I did enjoy the acting. In fact, several actors in The Evil Next Door work remarkably well.

Particularly, I have to highlight the young Eddie Eriksson Dominguez. He plays the young boy in this movie. Also, Dilan Gwyn (Dracula Untold) who plays Shirin is really great in this. Shirin is the stepmother of the young boy, Lucas. For both of these characters, their fear comes across very intensely and believable which is all due to the actors’ performances.

In particular, I also related to Shirin’s desire to understand what’s going on along with her frustration that no one believes her. The fact that she has nobody with faith in her is clearly a key point in this horror movie.

However, precisely when confronted with nobody believing you, would you not try to gather some sort of evidence?! I mean, that would certainly be my goal in the whole ordeal. Also, if a father is so concerned about his son’s wellbeing, why does he continue to leave him with his girlfriend? Especially while virtually accusing her of harming the boy!

Again, this has to do with script issues and not the acting, but it does harm the overall character portrayals.

Watch The Evil Next Door in theaters and On-Demand

The Evil Next Door was made by the filmmaker duo Tord Danielsson and Oskar Mellander. They are both co-directors and co-scriptwriters. Both have also worked on various TV series, which makes this their joint feature film debut.

The inspiration seems to come from horror movies by the likes of James Wan (The Conjuring, Insidious) as well as their countryman David F. Sandberg (Lights Out). In fact, it’s very obvious. Also, the style used in Japanese horror movie classics such as Ju-on (The Grudge) and Ringu (The Ring) in terms of sound and movement just adds to the lack of originality.

Ultimately, the story of The Evil Next Door even ends without a satisfying ending. It’s like a dull thump after a whole lot of craziness. I can only compare it with a fantastic rollercoaster ride (because this movie does have awesome scares) that finishes by going up a steep hill. And then the ride ends on that top instead of going down a crazy hill as you’d expect.

All in all the result is mediocre and probably deserving of 2½ stars, but we don’t do half stars so we end up on a solid 3 stars because of the great acting and atmosphere.

Magnet Releasing will release The Evil Next Door in theaters and on-demand on June 25, 2021.

Details

Directors: Tord Danielsson, Oskar Mellander
Stars: Dilan Gwyn, Eddie Eriksson Dominguez, Henrik Norlén, Karin Holmberg, Jakob Fahlstedt, Janna Granström, Linus Wahlgren

Plot

New to her stepmom role Shirin moves into a duplex with her partner, Fredrik, and his son, Lucas. The new home feels like the right place to start becoming a family. But when Fredrik leaves for work, strange things are heard from the other, uninhabited side. Also, who is Lucas’ new friend?

I write reviews and recaps on Heaven of Horror. And yes, it does happen that I find myself screaming, when watching a good horror movie. I love psychological horror, survival horror and kick-ass women. Also, I have a huge soft spot for a good horror-comedy. Oh yeah, and I absolutely HATE when animals are harmed in movies, so I will immediately think less of any movie, where animals are harmed for entertainment (even if the animals are just really good actors). Fortunately, horror doesn't use this nearly as much as comedy. And people assume horror lovers are the messed up ones. Go figure!
Karina