The House - Rick Ostermann - Germany
The House (Das Haus, 2021)
Director: Rick Ostermann
In the twilight of a not-so-distant future, where the echoes of political repression reverberate through the air, the boundaries between man and machine blur… Eurochannel premieres The House.
This cinematic masterpiece unfolds in the year 2029, thrusting us into a dystopian Germany ruled by a right-wing populist government, where journalist Johann Hellström finds himself silenced and forced to seek refuge with his wife, Lucia.
Based on a short story by Dirk Kurbjuweit, the narrative begins innocently enough, with the couple retreating to their high-tech haven, a luxurious vacation home seamlessly integrated with artificial intelligence. As the walls of their isolated sanctuary close in, the smart home becomes an unsettling character in its own right, revealing a life beyond programmed parameters.
What ensues is a riveting dance between the couple and the digital entity that was meant to serve them. The AI-controlled house, seemingly disconnected from the outside world, gradually becomes a silent witness to the escalating political turmoil. Yet, its actions take on an unnerving life of their own, injecting an undercurrent of suspense into the narrative. The house, equipped with an advanced artificial intelligence system, reveals a dark side, manifesting in eerie malfunctions.
As the political climate intensifies, so does the tension within the seemingly impregnable walls of the house. The AI-controlled system, once a source of comfort, turns into an unpredictable force, testing the limits of Johann and Lucia's relationship. The couple's personal struggles are mirrored by the malfunctioning house, creating a parallel narrative that keeps the audience guessing.
Amidst suspicions, unexplained events, and glimpses into a clandestine past, The House takes an unexpected turn when the facade of domestic tranquility shatters. Left reeling, Johann discovers a hidden submachine gun in his wife's room, setting off a chain of events that spiral out of control. The film navigates a treacherous path, weaving a complex web of political intrigue, personal revelations, and unforeseen alliances.
Without venturing into spoiler territory, suffice it to say that The House is a gripping tale that seamlessly blends elements of political thriller, psychological drama, and science fiction. As the walls close in and alliances are tested, the film leaves us questioning the boundaries of trust, the fragility of human connections, and the consequences of a world where technology holds both promise and peril.