Bernard Rose's "Paperhouse" about an 11-year-old English schoolgirl who grapples with her fears and conflicts by turning them into dreams that grow increasingly scary. Plays like "Nightmare on Elm Street" with brains. Suggesting a latter-day "Dreamchild" filtered through Bruno Bettelheim's "The Use of Enchantment". It begins with the girl (Charlotte Burke) drawing a house in a grassy plain, then inhabiting it in her sometimes fevered dreams. It's her way of controlling a world she increasingly perceives as unmanageable. Hovering uneasily on the brink of puberty, she has a jangly relationship with her mother (Glenne Headly) and resents the fact that her father (Ben Cross) has a job that requires him to be away a lot.
She sketches in a sad boy who can't walk (and thus is unthreatening), then pencils in things she thinks will make him happy. Sometimes the results are humorous, as when she provides an icecream machine, but forgets cones. When she adds her father to the drawing as a where knight, only to discover that he turns hostile and violent, she realtes, to her terror that she's in over her head. The interplay between the girl's dream and waking worms is adroitly realized by Rose, especially when he turns the imagers sinister. In this feature-film debut, he works his way with aplon into recesses that elude most film makers. "Paperhouse" is yet mother example of the enlightened and sophisticated energies that are making England such an interesting source of films these days.
— Jay Carr, Globe Staff (The Boston Globe 9/15/88)
HANS ZIMMER pioneered the use of state-of-the-art synthesisers and computer technology for creating film scores. Among many other credits, he is the composer responsible for the haunting music from "Moonlighting", "Castaway", "My Beautiful Laundrette" and "A World Apart". Most recently, he has worked on the soundtrack of Bertolucci's masterpiece "The Last Emperor".
Crucial to the film's success is a superb soundtrack, with a strong music score, but also heightened sound effects of great impact. — VARIETY, September 21 1988
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Bernard Rose would like to thank