Hell House LLC:
A Halloween Attraction You Shouldn’t Miss
A Review by Steve L. Clark
Hell House LLC (2015)
1 hour 33 minutes
Director: Stephen Cognetti
Writer: Stephen Cognetti
Genre: Horror, Mystery
Five years after an unexplained malfunction causes the death of 15 tour-goers and staff on the opening night of a Halloween haunted house tour, a documentary crew travels back to the scene of the tragedy to find out what really happened.
I admit it. I am a found footage fanatic. The Blair Witch Project captured my imagination. I saw it in a packed theater with my brother when I was 16 years old, and it blew me away. It wasn’t the first found footage film, but it launched the subgenre to new heights and unleashed a wave of new content. The good, the bad, and the ugly—I was there for all of it.
As I got older and started a family, there got to be less time for movies, and I started missing releases. Then a couple years ago, scrolling through the Shudder app, I came across a 2015 found footage movie/mockumentary I had never heard of called Hell House LLC. The description told of a documentary crew investigation of an unexplained malfunction at a Halloween haunted attraction five years previously, resulting in the death of 15 tour goers and staff. I was intrigued and pressed play. What followed was one of the creepiest and most unsettling movies I have ever seen.
The film opens with interview clips from a journalist, witness, and an author weaved between footage of the documentary crew at the now abandoned hotel. They set the scene perfectly, instantly identifying the Abbadon Hotel as a place of mystery and unease. A short time later, the documentary crew gets in touch with the one surviving staff member from that fateful night. She turns over a bag of video footage from the weeks leading up to opening night of Hell House which is where the movie really takes off.
We meet the group of twenty-somethings who run Hell House. This Halloween they are moving the attraction from the city to a more rural area and the vacant Abbadon Hotel, documenting the entire process on film. We watch as the team spends weeks turning the already spooky hotel into a haunted attraction. It isn’t long before strange things begin to occur. No spoilers, but Hell House is filled with high tension, genuinely creepy scenes. Very few times in my adult life has a movie put me on the edge. Hell House LLC is one of those movies.
Even if you aren’t a fan of the found footage trope, Hell House is so well acted and directed that I still give it the highest recommendations. If you’re like me and love found footage, this movie is an absolute must watch. The two sequels don’t quite capture the magic of the original, but are still great movies. When I talk to people about great horror movies in the last decade, Hell House LLC is the first title out of my mouth. Stream it for free on Shudder (along with both sequels) or Amazon Prime (which also features an extended director’s cut version). You won’t forget your stay at the Abbadon Hotel.
Steve L Clark is a horror author from southwest Ohio where he lives with his wife and three children. His publication debut was the short story Cold-Blooded in the anthology Dark Words: Stories of Urban Legends and Folklore. He followed that up with his own short story collection The Collapse of Ordinary featuring twelve horror stories ranging across supernatural, demonic, monsters, and human horror. He is currently working on his debut novella.
Both Dark Words and The Collapse of Ordinary are available on Amazon in ebook and paperback.
Dark Words —
Horror hides everywhere! That abandoned house down your street, the woods nearby, even your own home. They all have old stories and legends of ghouls, demons and monsters. Throughout time, their stories were handed down around campfires and during sleepovers. Today, those stories will have a fresh take, but with the same Dark Words.
The Collapse of Ordinary —
What happens when horror and madness collide with reality?
For most of us, life is a routine of the same chores and responsibilities. We are ordinary people doing ordinary things, unaware of the chaos closing in.
A hotel auditor gets more than he bargained for from a scary story podcast
A trip to the casino turns sinister with more on the line than money
A graveside funeral service spirals into a web of mind shattering revelations
These horrors and more await you within. Cast aside your doubts, open your mind, and embrace the insanity.
Walk with me into the Collapse of Ordinary