Free to a Bad Home (2022)

Do we possess items or do they possess us?  That’s the operating theme in Free To A Bad Home, which is quite unsettling in its approach to horror and damn effective, too.  Some of you aren’t ready for this anthology due to just how intricate the connecting threads are. In that case, suffer well, my friends.  Suffer well.

Opening with a series of  shocking deaths - one which includes a very atmospheric hanging - Free To A Bad Home behaves like a calling card for the talent involved.  Everything works to create a horror experience which transcends the trappings of the horror genre.  Directed by The Hale Brothers and featuring spot-on cinematography from william., Terror Films’ digital release of Free To A Bad Home is sure to turn heads and get more fans hip to just what The Hale Brothers are doing with their films.

"sure to turn heads and get more fans hip to just what The Hale Brothers are doing with their films"

The stories collected here are set up by a box which is discovered by some morning joggers.  Inside the box are several items which - as one side is facing the audience - clearly states that they are “Free To A Good Home”.  After handling the items - one a ring - and rummaging through the box, they immediately get a bad feeling and continue with their jog.  What they don’t know is that this collection is actually Free To A Bad Home and for good reason, but you have to wait to find out why.

The movie begins with the story of “Amy” who is now a widow.  She is alone and lives a life of silence, which is why, on the night a friend stops by to drink wine and catch up, an unsettling noise from the kitchen is so disturbing to the girls.  There is no one else here, but there is a figure lurking about . . .

. . . talk about suspense!  How this sequence is set-up is damn exciting, too.  The killer is visible, yet she never sees him.  We do and - in one clever sequence after another - the mystery of what happens to Amy and why she is a widow comes into view on this remote farm.  It is haunting to the last moment.

Even as we shift into the next story, the atmosphere remains solidly in place.  Thanks to an epic overhead shot, the story of “Ryan” announces itself through the darkness with grace.  This is the tale of a thief who finds out the hard way that his life of crime, no matter how exciting it becomes, has its own form of consequences. Free to a Bad Home (2022)

Again, the camera here is expressive and follows the thief through a darkened house as he makes his way to the safe.  What’s in the safe?  It matters little as there is A WOMAN CHAINED UP IN THE HOUSE!  Holy shit.  Didn’t see that coming, did you?!  Let the subversion begin!

And that’s just it, Free To A Bad Home, like Creepshow and V/H/S before it, is full of unsettling surprises throughout its running time as the evil lurking about in the shadows of these characters’ lives takes center stage: cursed objects terrorize those who come into contact with them. 

Featuring solid performances from Miranda Nieman, Jake C. Young, Olivia Dennis, Hayley Sunshine, and Roni Locke, directors Scott and Kameron Hale take grief and possession to task, elevating the horror genre with an unmatched narrative process, heightening our senses as three stories are seamlessly woven together, with “Julia” being the trippiest one thanks to the hallucinogenic backgrounds - which include Night of the Living Dead, a whole lot of neon flashes, and buckets of blood as she and her friends head to a Halloween party and discover sadism itself.

Expanding the anthology into three savagely-linked narratives, Free To A Bad Home arrives on streaming platforms on February 17 from Terror Films.  This is one horror tale you definitely do not want to miss!

4/5 stars

Film Details

Free to a Bad Home (2022)

MPAA Rating: Unrated.
80 mins
: Kameron Hale; Scott Hale
Kameron Hale; Scott Hale
Miranda Nieman; Hayley Sunshine; Jake C. Young
: Horror
Suffer Well.
Memorable Movie Quote:
Theatrical Distributor:
Terror Films
Official Site:
Release Date:
February 17, 2023
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:

Synopsis: The lives of three strangers - a widow, a thief, and an addict - are terrorized by cursed objects and those that spread them.


Free to a Bad Home (2022)