Everyone knows how much I love Ti West’s 2009 film House Of The Devil. Ever since I first saw it I have been showing it to as many people as possible. One of my favorite instances of this was bringing it to my brothers house and watching it with him without telling him it was actually a modern film. When it was finished he remarked how he enjoyed it but didn’t remember it from the 80’s and thats when I shocked him by telling him it had only come out that year. Since that day he has been fully aware about my obsession with the movie and so on a perfectly gloomy, cold and rainy October day that also happened to be my birthday, we along with my niece and her boyfriend finally made the trek to check out the shooting locations from the film.
About an hour away from my brothers town in Westchester, NY is the city of Torrington, CT. This would be our first destination and it was a fun and scenic drive to get there even with the day’s consistent downpour. One of the cool things about Torrington is that it is also home to the location from another Ti West film, The Yankee Pedlar Inn featured in 2011’s The Innkeepers. As some fans may be familiar with, The Yankee Pedlar Inn is where West and his cast and crew stayed while filming The House Of The Devil. It was heavily rumored to be haunted and this is what inspired the Ti West to write The Innkeepers. So getting to see another location from another film we were fans of was a nice appetizer of sorts. When we first arrived in Torrington it only took a few moments before we were staring at the inn. We quickly found parking directly across the street and and soon came to discover that sadly, the Yankee Pedlar Inn was shut down and no longer open for business. So unfortunately while we couldn’t go inside and explore the interior anymore, the outside of the premises was fair game and luckily there was still plenty of Yankee Pedlar signs around the place to snap photos of. The desolate nature of the rear of the building coupled with the brief glimpses we could sneak of the now abandoned interior definitely gave it a creepy vibe. It was cool to see in person and definitely worth it as part of the trip.
So after that very cool starting point, time came to head on out to find the next location on our itinerary, the house and church from the opening scene of House Of The Devil. Luckily the spot was in the same city only a few blocks away from the Yankee Pedlar. One of the famous things HOTD is known for is it’s opening scene, particularly the freeze frame title screen featuring Jocelin Donahue as Samantha Hughes walking away from her would be apartment located next to a church. So this was pretty exciting to roll up on and see that for the most part the house in this scene had gone unchanged aside from some paint on the first floor exterior. So even though it was pouring rain at this point we parked the car and checked out the area and after a few tries, I was able to get a pretty good pic in front of the yellow house which was the exterior for the apartment Samantha wants to rent in the film and St. Mary Parish thanks to my niece.
With the rain picking up even more and all the necessary photos taken it was time to press on to our next and final destination the actual House Of The Devil, which is located about 35 minutes away in Lakeville, CT. Beforehand though I wanted to share a couple other quick picks of Torrington as while these are not the best pics, it was a pretty neat little city which I wish we had less rain and more time to explore it and take some more pics, but we had to press on. Which was a bit of a shame because Torrington has a plethora of old buildings, homes and churches which were extra cool and would have been cool to photograph on this rainy fall day in late October.
During October it is always great to try and get in as many Fall vibes and as much Halloween themed fun as possible. The drive to The House Of The Devil was a beautifully scenic one littered with mountains and trees full of leaves changing colors.
We eventually arrived at our next destination, the cemetery from House of the Devil. While the cemetery itself seems to have no name of it’s own it is across the street from the Trinity Lime Rock Episcopal Church (yes that is the name) so perhaps it is a part of the church’s property.
You may recognize the wall in the photos if you are a big fan of the film, it’s the location where Greta Gerwig’s character Megan pulls her car into off the road to smoke a cigarette after leaving Samantha at the house.
Had it not been pouring and freezing out, we probably would have gone for a longer walk into the cemetery itself. As far as cemeteries go, this one is quite beautiful, so after a bit of wandering up and down the perimeter of the grounds it was time to get over to our main destination.
Just up the road from the cemetery lies the actual “House of the Devil”. In the film they shot it to make it seem like the house was much more secluded and further away from the main road. I had thought it may have one of those gated driveways and be difficult to actually see, but I was surprised and relieved to find that it was completely visible from the street. We also lucked out as the rainfall lightened up for a few minutes so we could really get out and take a few good photos.
There is definitely something surreal about standing in front of a main location from a movie you have watched countless times and stare at everyday on a poster on your wall (albeit sans fire)
The house itself is beautiful as you can see in this closeup photo below and I wish I had taken a few more pics of the road and surrounding area just to give a better sense of what it is like around it. As you can see in the photos the front lawn is huge and in a lower photo you can see just how much property the house sits on. Unfortunately the place was not vacant so we couldn’t get closer and walk around the premises, I would have loved to get photos from different angles and on the front porch. It was also nice that the house remained unchanged and was still exactly as it appeared in the film. Sometimes a house get repainted or additions made to them and can lose some of their signature looks they had in a film but not here.
So at the end of the day visiting all these spots was awesome.It was a cool and different way for me to spend part of my birthday and one of the last days of October right before Halloween. The House Of The Devil is a special movie to me for many reasons and seeing this first hand really just added to my appreciation for the film. I have to thank my brother for taking the trip on such a rainy day, but as we all agreed that only added to the atmosphere and as evidenced by this final photo below, it was the epitome of an October day well spent.