Horror Spotlight: The Wolf House takes inspiration from fairytales


“The Wolf House”, released on March 20, 2020, is a horror/drama film by Chilean directors Cristóbal León and Joaquin Cociña.

Sasha Kaiser, Staff Writer

A woman, a wolf, and two pigs, are what make up this animated fairytale, made to induct new followers into a cult. La Casa Lobo, released in 2018 and directed by Cristobal León and Joaquín Cociña, is a terrific claymation horror film, similar to the works of Jan Švankmajer, who uses fairytale elements to add to the horror and unsettling atmosphere. 

The story starts with footage explaining how what we are about to watch is made for a specific colony in Chile that is known for its honey. They explain how the colony is good-natured and rumors have been created about them due to ignorance. After, it cuts to a film made by the colony to, “dispel the horrible rumors,” according to the movie. It starts with our main character, Maria, who has escaped from a colony in Chile after being punished for releasing some of the colony’s pigs. She arrives at a strange-looking house, where she is greeted by two pigs, who are the only inhabitants and who end up morphing into her children.

Now, for some context. The story is based on the real-life Colonia Dignidad. A colony in Chile ran by a Nazi from Germany named Paul Schaefer. It lasted for many years, and many families were stuck there; it became notorious for torture and murder of its citizens. Without the historical context, some aspects of the movie may be lost on the viewer, but the aspect of abuse can still show either way.

 As the movie goes on, it gets more and more nightmarish. Characters dissolve into pools and then rebuild themselves in front of our eyes, something that somewhat loses its “wow” factor after a couple of times, but nonetheless, is a cool visual effect. While at the house, Maria is constantly tormented by a wolf, who we only see as an eye. Maria tries to live on her own and care for her two children on her own, as things prove difficult for her.

The Wolf House does a good job of portraying abuse and how victims can become dependent on their abuser. It takes inspiration from fairy tales like Little Red Riding Hood and uses them to make a familiar yet scary story. Stop Motion films are tricky, and I think they’re one of the most underrated art forms. For these reasons, I think The Wolf House is worthy of the horror spotlight. 

I give it 5 paws.