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A cinematic chiller for the weekend after Christmas

The Haunting of Radcliffe House is a feature length supernatural thriller that you could easily have missed, tucked away as it was at 9.35pm on Channel 5 last night. For those who enjoy a good haunted house mystery on a cold mid-winter’s night, it is definitely worth a look. Starring the excellent Olivia Williams and one-time Hollywood star Matthew Modine the story revolves around a family’s move to a derelict mansion on the Yorkshire moors, where the wife’s job is to oversee the property’s restoration for her American employer. Tensions between husband and wife are apparent almost immediately, as is the mounting sense of foreboding which builds when the secrets of the labyrinthine country house begin to reveal themselves.
The tale is fast-paced, full of creepy vignettes and with a perfectly menacing performance by Modine. There are undeniably some horror cliches dotted about in this drama; with bricked up doorways and disconnected telephones ringing in the dead of night but enough original little details in the script to make the viewer overlook them.
Overall, a thoroughly entertaining watch, with atmospheric direction and plenty of genuine chills.

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