The Owners is available to rent and buy on all major streaming platforms from 22nd February.
I have said it once, and I’ll say it again, we don’t see enough of Sylvestor McCoy on TV or film. This makes Julius Berg’s new film The Owners all the more enticing, especially when McCoy is joined by the fantastic Rita Tushingham (A Taste of Honey) and Maisie Williams (Game of Thrones) in a creepy home invasion horror based on the French graphic novel Une Nuit de Pleine lune.
Opening with a trio of young men sitting in a smoke-filled car, scoping out a house deep in the English countryside, The Owners takes no time in introducing us to the childlike Terry (Ellis), the opportunistic Nathan (Kenny), and the dangerous and volatile Gaz (Curran). Their mission is simple; the break-in and robbery of the home of Dr Huggin (McCoy) and his wife (Tushingham). The reason is a hidden safe containing cash spotted by Terry’s mum, who the Huggins employed as a cleaner. But, as the boys wait, Mary (Williams), Nathan’s girlfriend, unexpectedly arrives, becoming an unwitting accomplice. However, what starts as a simple burglary, soon spirals out of control as the group discover the only way into the safe is a code the elderly couple keeps hidden.
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Director Julius Berg does a sterling job of slowly building tension and fear over the films opening fifty minutes, employing a raft of tried and tested camera techniques to increase the sense of claustrophobia. However, The Owners never quite manages to build on these strengths while discarding underlying themes of class, privilege and generational divide with a bog-standard horror finale.
However, despite its weaknesses, The Owners is an entertaining slice of horror that occasionally shines in the hands of McCoy and Tushingham. At the same time, its young cast ensures a quick, energetic pace, despite the lacklustre final act. The resulting is a blood-soaked and quirky home invasion horror that never takes itself too seriously but also lacks bite.