Horror Movie Review! “Don’t Listen”

My Rating: 6/10

Don't Listen | Netflix Official Site

Don’t listen is a Spanish Horror movie from 2020 with a shitload of potential. It’s not what it appears to be at first, which was a pleasant surprise for me, because I was dubious as fuck going into this. I love Spanish movies — Spanish is my favourite language — but all the horror I’ve watched in Spanish has leaned heavily on religious themes, and that’s just not my jam. This one has a bit of that, but it’s not the major focus.

When it begins, we’re introduced to a young boy named Eric and his parents. He’s troubled: haunted by abusive voices and, judging by his gruesome drawings, visions as well. His parents are house flippers, so they’ve recently moved into an old infested place hoping to make bank.

This seems like the perfect setup for the typical trope: victim of a haunting acts crazy, turns out no one believes them, and it was the evil house all along, or some variation of that. But that’s not what this movie is. And about a half hour into the movie it shifts gears, and you see what it really is all about.

It’s about a man: broken, haunted, and desperate.

The movie is raw. It’s emotional. The acting is amazing. The writing is maybe slightly less so? But still decent, and the story is hella good. And speaking of amazing, this movie really nails the ambiance. Not just with the score, and the cinematography, but also with the colour scheme. I mean, I’ve never really noticed the colours in a movie before, but this one bleeds blues and reds, and I found it quite beautiful.

It’s fucking slow, though. Some action scenes crawl by at a snail’s pace, and I found myself checking how much was left a couple times. Not so slow that it ruined the tension, but slow enough. And there are a couple horror-movie-itis moments in this one, as you would expect — I long for the day when I can write a horror review without having to use that word — when some characters make some ridiculous choices.

Seriously, this was what I jotted in my notes: “A lot of this drama could be avoided if they just fucking communicated with each other.”

Or maybe left the room when ghosty shit started happening?

Regardless, it’s a good movie. I’d definitely recommend it for the ambiance and the emotional turmoil and likeable characters. Oh! But one more thing. For those of you who care whether animals get hurt in movies, here’s a sliiight spoiler. I promise it’s not a big part of the plot, but I’m hiding it anyway. Highlight to read:

There are cats at the beginning of this movie, and yes, something bad happens to them.

Other movie reviews by Sam Clover:

Sam Clover is a published author of M/M speculative fiction. Though she dabbles in a variety of genres, dark themes always find ways to permeate her work. She is a prairie girl from east of the Canadian Rockies, and a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community. Her debut book “Cold Snap” was released by Ninestar Press in December of 2020.

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