For a few years there, it seemed as if Katherine Heigl was gently steering her career into the placid and pleasant waters of rom-com stardom. There was 27 Dresses and The Ugly Truth and New Year’s Eve and Life As We Know It, a healthy output of romantic(ish) and funny-enough films that were exactly as entertaining as they needed to be. But that didn’t really do it for the star—and, frankly, it didn’t seem to work for audiences, who eventually expressed a marked disdain for the actress—and Heigl soon moved on to other kinds of projects.
Like Anthony Burns’ Home Sweet Hell, which attempts to skewer rom-com tropes and suburban life in general, and ends up looking nothing short of bafflingly bizarre in the process. Heigl stars in the film alongside Patrick Wilson, playing a moderately successful couple—the Champagnes—whose lives are upended by Don’s (Wilson) wandering eye (and, uh, other parts). Once Don knocks up a new employee (Jordana Brewster), Heigl’s Mona hatches a foolproof plan to do away with the black mark on their otherwise perfect life: They’ll kill her. Easy, right?
The trail of the tape
Title: Home Sweet Hell
Director: Anthony Burns
Screenwriters: Carlo Allen, Ted Elrick, Tom Lavagnino
Cast: Katherine Heigl, Patrick Wilson, Jordana Brewster
Release date: Spring 2015
The entire trailer in one line of dialogue: “Ahh, they made me do crystal meth!”
The entire trailer in one screengrab:
The film’s IMDb page gives us a little more insight into what’s really going on with Mona: She’s not just jealous, she’s actually crazy. More precisely, she’s a “bipolar, obsessive-compulsive woman.” Oh good, that doesn’t sound offensive at all.
It’s difficult to pin down the exact tone that Home Sweet Hell is going for with this scattershot trailer (well, beyond just “wait, what?”), and Burns (and a screenwriting team that includes no less than three names, including a guy most famous for having a bit part in The Cable Guy) appears to be from the “more is more” school of thinking. Premeditated murder isn’t enough, a film also needs strippers, crystal meth, and someone hacking up a body in their underwear. Sounds appropriately hellish.