Review of THE LITTLE STRANGER – Rated R – 1 hr. 51 mins. 

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THE LITTLE STRANGER – Rated R – 1 hr. 51 mins. 

DIRECTOR:  Lenny Abrahamson

WRITERS:  Sarah Waters (Novel), Lucinda Coxon 

STARRING:  Domhnall Gleeson, Ruth Wilson, Charlotte Rampling, and Will Poulter

Based on the Novel by the same name by Sarah Waters ~ and told through the eyes of “the little stranger himself” Dr. Faraday (Domhnall Gleeson), we venture into Hundreds Hall, which happens to be a place of contentment and peace for the young doctor, as he remembers vividly visiting this gorgeous place as a child, when his mother worked for its owner, Mrs. Ayres (Charlotte Rampling).

When Dr. Faraday is summoned to look in on one of the Ayres family’s young servants, he becomes mesmerized by Mrs. Aryes daughter Caroline (Ruth Wilson), and rather taken a-back too by her very peculiar brother Roderick (Will Poulter).

Knowing how grand this home once was, Dr. Faraday is saddened by the incessant decline of this beautiful home, and how sad its inhabitants seem to be as well, appearing to be freaked out, if not haunted by “another inhabitant” within.

Torn between what is real, and what it seems Caroline and her mother are being subjected to daily, the good Dr. finds himself drawn to this Manor from his childhood, and the beautiful Caroline Ayes too, as he tries to understand exactly what is, or isn’t happening within the walls of this arduous Estate…

I give THE LITTLE STRANGER a rating of WAIT AND CATCH THIS FILM ON NETFLIX or STREAMING:  Barely scary, and rather slow and dull at times too, THE LITTLE STRANGER is the tamest psychological thriller I have ever seen.  Gleeson’s role as the good Dr. Faraday is rather mundane and unconvincing from the start, as there are more sparks flying between him, and the mansion he loves, than between him and his beloved Caroline. Rampling and Poulter’s performances are a little more convincing, but still not scary or menacing in any way.  The only shining light in this film came from Wilson, as her performance was not only believable, but the only one that kept me barely on the edge of my seat.   The most vivid portrayal throughout this film comes from the house itself, as its decay and decline are empathetic to the decay and decline of the Aryes family, and the demons that lie within.  If you love psychological thrillers, THE LITTLE STRANGER just isn’t going to cut it for you, I promise.  And if you love Horror Films, then you are definitely going to be saddened by dropping money at the box office to catch this not scary at all horror flick.  In other words…I suggest that you wait and catch THE LITTLE STRANGER when it pops of Netflix or Streaming, so you can experience this one in the comfort of your own home, and if you are as disenchanted as I was the whole way through…then you can switch the channel and catch something a lot more exciting…

Kathy Kaiser