House IV (1992)

Years ago I caught part of this flick on television. The scene involves our heroine, Kelly, discovering that her pizza has a face right before it attacks her. This was forever burned into my brain apparently, because when I encountered that scene again on YouTube a few months ago, I immediately recalled it and decided I needed to track it down. This led me to find House 4. Hey, I thought to myself, I enjoyed the first House movie. Why not check out the rest of the series? Since then, I’ve seen the sequel, House 2: The Second Story, and now I have gotten to watch House IV: The Repossession. While House 2 is ridiculous enough to see in its own right, House 4…not so much. It just doesn’t live up to what I want it to be. Turns out the Pizza Man scene is the best bit of the film. This is…unfortunate. But the Pizza Man scene is really catchy. I recommend it.

In this movie, William Katt plays Roger Cobb again, returning from the original film. But now he is married with a daughter, and the house is out west somewhere sitting on top of an Indian burial ground. Roger gets killed, and his daughter, Laurel, is paralyzed, leaving Kelly to take things over. She has to contend with her broken family, try to fix up the house, deal with her brother-in-law, Burke, and figure out why blood flows out of the pipes and strange noises come from the basement. You know, like every other house we see on Property Brothers.

That could potentially be a fun setup for a horror movie, but House 4 ruins it by not being sure whether it wants to be serious or comedy and then completely failing to be either. Burke wants to raze the house for a midget mob boss to use as a toxic waste dumping ground, and he has his two joker goons to help him out. So far the mob has avoided EPA regulation by spraypainting the word NON- in front of TOXIC WASTE on their barrels, but the government is investigating! Suddenly, this is a bad episode of Captain Planet. Oh, and the mob boss is bilious, so we get a great torture scene where Burke is forced to drink a cup full of phlegm. Yum.

Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad if it didn’t go for the total cheeseball ending either. Burke’s goons set fire to the house, but suddenly the ancient Indian burial ground erupts in a geyser of water! Laurel can miraculously walk again! Roger’s soul passes on! The maid really works for the FBI! It’s like a bad after school special about pollution, ghosts, and relations with Native Americans. “Hey kid, your dad is still dead, but isn’t it great to not be paralyzed?” It’s a shame this series ended up getting so way off course.

This movie also gives me lamp dog. I just…I just can’t. I’m sorry, I can’t. Whatever potential this movie had, it loses it. Too bad. I still need to see House 3: The Horror Show, which is not related in any way, so I guess I shouldn’t count it as part of this series.

We gotta stop putting stuff on Indian burial grounds, yo.

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