What’s scarier than ghost hunting? Ghost hunting underwater.

Dive into The Deep House – if you dare.

Deep below the surface of a seemingly tranquil remote lake lies a perfectly preserved family home. When a young influencer couple sets out to explore the submerged house to capture uncharted content for their social media followers, their dive turns into a nightmare as they discover a sinister presence. With limited oxygen supply and time running against them, the couple must find a way to escape the underwater house of horrors before it’s too late.

The Deep House Review

The Deep House takes two classic horror tropes and brings them together; this is both a “haunted house” movie and a “there’s something in the water” movie. It’s an inventive approach which manages to bolster both tropes, making the movie more than the sum of its parts. This is a film that definitely understood the root horrors of both sides, and knew how to play them off of each other.

Claustrophobic to the max

“Trapped in a haunted house” is an inherently claustrophobic premise; the ill-intent of the paranormal combines with the fear of the unknown and the adrenaline-fueled panic of not being able to escape. 

Scuba diving has its own brand of claustrophobia to it; slipping into the darkness of the water limits your senses, and forces you to become dependent on your oxygen line for survival.

So yeah, it’s no wonder bringing the two together makes for one anxiety-inducing movie.

The production design and cinematography in The Deep House really set it apart. You’re immersed in this close-quarters world of watery darkness and unknowns around every corner. There’s an incredible eeriness to seeing a house preserved underwater. Everything is the same, but a little bit off

As Ben and Tina travel throughout the home, they pick up on more and more unsettling details, building the mystery and suspense. Navigating their lake bed world is inherently slower than walking on the shore above, and the film matches their slowed pace for most of its runtime. For me, the slower portion of the movie ran a bit too long. It felt like the film stalled out before finally reaching its climax. If you prefer your horror action-packed with gruesome kills and big jump scares from the get-go, The Deep House isn’t the movie for you.

The Deep House

Anything for the followers?

Now, our duo don’t just dive into the depths of the unknown because they’re thrill seekers looking for the next adrenaline rush or adventure. In fact, Tina’s not very interested in taking part in the dive at all. She’s convinced by her boyfriend Ben to take the plunge.

And Ben’s convinced by his social media followers.

It’s an inherently annoying character trait, to do objectively dumb things for internet clout. I’m not saying it’s unrealistic. But it is sort of…unlikeable. That’s where things get a little muddled, because the movie doesn’t seem to actually want you to dislike Ben. 

When it comes to social media influencers, he’s not the worst. He does acknowledge that Tina’s uncomfortable with the dive, and helps calm her down during intense moments. He’s also not blindly reckless about the whole thing; he comes prepared with the right equipment, sends the drone to scope out locations first before entering them, that sort of thing. He could have definitely been characterized as more arrogant, more self-centered, and more foolhardy than he was.

But he’s still not great.

Horror movies always lose me when characters start making choices wildly against their own self-interest and survival instincts. When Tina and Ben find two dead bodies chained up in the cellar, Tina’s reaction is “we need to get the hell out of here.” Ben’s reaction is “ok, but let me film a couple more shots first.”


The Deep House: You Only Dive Once…

Overall, I found the premise of The Deep House compelling enough to carry me to the end of the movie, despite some issues with pacing and characterization. The underwater world created a mysterious, eerie, and claustrophobic atmosphere that definitely triggers some suspense and anxiety, even if it takes too long to build to full-on terror.

The ticking clock on the oxygen level seemed like a bigger and scarier threat than the supernatural. (But maybe that’s just my personal fear of drowning kicking in.) It kept me entertained enough through a single viewing, but this is a dive I would only make once.