Sunday, February 19, 2012

The People Under the Stairs Movie Review 224

The People Under the Stairs is a 1991 horror movie directed by Wes Craven and starring Wendy Robie and Everett McGill.

Fool(Brandon Adams) is a 13 year old kid who lives with his sick mother and his sister in a horrible tenement which is falling apart. He meets Leroy(Ving Rhames) who tells him that he is going to rob the house of the landlord to get money and that if he helps him, he can take a cut. He has a treasure map of the place and he has heard that the landlord has gold coins stashed in the house. Fool calls to the house which people think is creepy. He pretends to be a boy scout selling cookies. A woman comes out to him. She is called Mommy(Robie) and she doesn't want anything to do with him and sends him off. She is living in the house with her daughter Alice(A.J.Langer) and Daddy(McGill). A friend of Leroy's called Spencer calls at the house pretending that he is the gas man and he goes inside to case the place. He doesn't come out. Someone goes out in a car so Leroy and Fool go inside.

They break in and meet a nasty dog. It chases them and they have to lock themselves into a room. They let themselves out and Leroy goes upstairs for a look while Fool hears something coming from the basement.
He goes to investigate and he finds Spencer who is dead. He sees that there are loads of people down there and they are locked up. Who are they? Alice helps him escape from them. Mommy and Daddy arrive back at the house and they see Leroy's van. They go inside and they realise someone has broken in. Daddy kills Leroy. Fool talks to Alice. He finds out that she has never been outside and that all of the people in the cellar were kids that the couple abducted and tried to make into their son. They didn't fit the bill so Daddy cut their tongues out or hurt them in some way and left them down there. They took Alice from her parents and made her their own daughter. There is a kid they couldn't lock in the basement and his name is Roach. He lives in the walls of the house and Daddy wants to kill him.

Some cops come to the house but Mommy tells them nothing is wrong so they leave. The dog is prowling and he runs after Fool  but Roach pulls Fool into the walls to get away. Daddy shoots at them. They end up in Alice's room but Fool gets caught and thrown into the basement by Daddy. Daddy cuts up bodies and feeds them the cellar people. Fool fears that he is next. Roach saves him but dies. Fool escapes from the house but can't take Alice with him. Fool managed to get some of the gold coins and he will be set for life with them.
 He can't forget Alice and he decides to go back to get her out. He finds out that Mommy and Daddy are actually brother and sister. He goes back to the house and he has to try and get Alice out without getting killed but Mommy and Daddy are on his tail.

He finds Alice and the try to leave. Meanwhile, all of the tenants from the horrible tenement show up at the door and Mommy has to fend them off as she tries to find Fool. Fool finds himself in the basement and he realises that the people under the stairs want to get out and see the outside world so he releases them. Mommy and Alice fight and the people under the stairs save her and kill Mommy. Daddy gets blown up by Fool and the people under the stairs are released and they look around at the world again. Daddy and Mommy's money rains down from the sky and everyone rejoices. This was a good movie and I liked it. I especially liked the teaming of Robie and McGill once again (they starred as husband and wife in TV show Twin Peaks!). They were very good in the roles and I think that was the best thing about this movie. It gets a 6/10.


Susan Leighton said...

I have fond memories of this movie. When it came out, it was a must see for me because of Craven & McGill & Robie. I know that the box office was disappointing but I enjoyed it. Good review!

Amanda said...

Thanks!It wouldn't be my favourite Craven film but I did like it.I liked the pairing of McGill and Robie and they were perfect in this creepy movie.It is a forgotten movie in some ways as I never hear anything about it which is a shame.I must rewatch this!!

Tony Briley said...

I enjoyed this one as well. Nice, detailed review.

Amanda said...

Thanks!!It's a good movie!

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