Spiderhole (2010): Don't Pop A Squat; It Might Pop Back
British art school students Molly, Zoe, Luke, and Toby (Emma Griffiths Malin, Amy Noble, Ruben-Henry Biggs, George Maguire) are tired of paying rent and utilities and the like. Instead they decide to find somewhere to squat, essentially take over an unoccupied building and declare residency (a feat which is apparently fairly easy to achieve in England), a practice that has fallen out of favor, but once was rife in the London artistic community. Finding an enormous mansion, the four-some move in, get drunk, have sex, and generally don't do a lot to insure their safety in their new home. In the morning, where there had been only wooden doors before, they find steel doors bolted and welded shut. It doesn't take them long to figure out that someone else is in the house. That someone is a crazed doctor with sketchy motives, but a clear desire to remove legs, hands, eyes, and hearts. As the group gets split up and picked off, the survivors begin to realize there is something in the house even worse than the deranged doc.
Grave Encounters, also an IFC Films product, and I liked it very much. Spiderhole actually reads at points like a less entertaining, less imaginative version of that film. While I highly support IFC giving first time and indie directors distribution deals, I do think they should keep a tight eye on quality control. I would not have been at all surprised if I found this playing on SyFy, but if I tuned into the channel that claimed to be "Always on, Slightly off" and saw this flick, I'd feel like that "slightly" might need an adjustment up. Spiderhole really misses the mark, and not just with the tired story line. It violates the cardinal rule of horror films. It has to be scary. Even a jaded ol' Bugg like me knows a real scare when he sees one, but as far as I can tell, all the frights in Spiderhole must have bugged out.