Hello Supercult West! This is Supercult South Bad Movie Professor Cameron Coker (BS in “No Acting Required” with a minor in “It was better in the Screenplay”) and I’m reaching out to you from across the country to help hype tonight’s screening of Hider in the House, which at first sounds like a 1970s board game that you play with your cousins instead of a 1989 thriller about a recently released psychiatric patient who spies on an unsuspecting family from their attic in order to insidiously force his way into their lives.
First of all, the premise of a deranged Gary Busey setting up surveillance equipment, planting evidence of a phony marital affair, and even constructing a secret room within the family’s attic HG TV style all silently and without notice over the course of weeks if not months is laughable. But if you can get past the inanity of it all, Hider in the House is perhaps one of the most believable portrayals of a deranged character since Hitchcock’s Pyscho.
A psychologist was hired as an advisor to make sure that the main character and antagonist was as realistic as possible and after meeting with the psychologist Busey was excited it calling it a “No Acting Required Film” and saying, “I am the character!” The film’s original script even had Busey’s character act even more sympathetic, explaining much of his behavior as the result of his abusive childhood and even having the character redeem himself by the end of the film.
Although originally supportive, the studio eventually opted for a more commercially safe ending. Even so, in a stunning display of someone in Hollywood being a not horrible human being, the film’s executive producer, Steven Reuther, later admitted to writer Matthew Patrick that the original ending would have been better.