Well it Doesn't Suck
Kayla Gates (Raleigh Holmes) returns home from college when her parents move in to the dream house that her father, Tim (Jonathan Silverman - Swinging with the Finkels), and mother, Susan (Lori Loughlin - Soldier's Love Story), always wanted. What they don't realise is they are not alone as hiding in their attic is Aldon Webber (Steven Weber - The Twelve Days of Christmas Eve), the previous owner of the house who when his children died had a nervous breakdown and was forced to let go of the house by the bank when he didn't keep up the payments. But when strange things start to happen, from the bins getting put out with no one doing it to the TV turning it self on in the middle of the night, the Gates family begin to realise they are in danger, they just don't realise how much danger they are in.
As "Crawlspace", which is also known as "The Attic", started and I saw the words "Inspired by True Events" I had mixed feelings because far too often I have watched true event/true story movies only to watch something which is generic and formula driven. But then the cast in "Crawlspace" with Steven Weber and Lori Loughlin attracted me as did the basic premise. The whole idea of a troubled previous tenant living in secret in an attic and spooking the family who have moved in is full of potential to be a horrifying movie which will make you sleep uneasy at night.
But "Crawlspace" just didn't work like I hoped it would and it failed to deliver the fear factor like I wanted it to, although it is at times surprisingly graphic. It certainly tries and the build up which sees various strange things happening is quite effective as things such as empty cartons being left in the fridge to old neighbours acting peculiarly are not out of the question in the real world. Combine that with Aldon watching the Gates family through air conditioning vents in the ceiling and walking around the place when they are not about or are sleeping is entertaining. The trouble is that not only does it fail to really build the right atmosphere but you have to let some things ride as to what Aldon gets away with. Although you will certainly be careful around vacuum cleaners when you watch a scene involving a death by one.
But what "Crawlspace" has it the right cast and whilst I wouldn't say that the chemistry between them is 100% believable the appeal of Raleigh Homes and Lori Loughlin certainly helps to make it engaging. Plus there is Steven Weber whose silent presence during the movie's first half is when it is at its most effective, especially during the scene involving the vacuum cleaner.
What this all boils down to is that "Crawlspace" is a mixed bag as some things in it are surprisingly good with the appeal of the cast playing a big part in its effectiveness. But whilst it has some graphically horrifying moments it is hit and miss with some scenes working better than others.