A baroque but strangely effective shaggy dog story, “Take Me Home” offers an ominous new spin on getting in touch with one’s inner child. Genre-hopping tale of a Los Angeles-based businesswoman who journeys to the scenic-yet-creepy Austrian village where she has inherited a seemingly haunted house, benefits from gung-ho perfs, offbeat humor and helmer Robert Narholz’s knack for rendering disturbing states of mind visually. Low-budget, primarily German-lingo pic could interest any programming outlet partial to ghosts, psychological thrillers and/or pics that mock provincial thinking.
Elisabeth (Elisabeth Lanz), who was adopted, is still plagued at age 35 by harrowing nightmares of being hauled off from a remote farmhouse in Austria as a 5-year-old girl. The vivid dreams are poisoning her relationship with her long-suffering American boyfriend.
When Elisabeth and her slacker brother Thomas (Thomas Sturn, droll) suddenly co-inherit the farmhouse of the dream, Elisabeth returns to Upper Austria only to learn they’ll have to sell the place to cover taxes.
Elisabeth, who harbors intense anger toward the mother she barely knew, experiences unsettling appearances of a little girl as she readies the farmhouse for sale. Moppet is probably a ghost but could be a figment of Elisabeth’s imagination.
A distinguished but terminally bored local physician (Miguel Herz-Kestranek) turns gallant when confronted with Elisabeth. A nurse (Heidelinde Pfaffenbichler), who works closely with the doc, doesn’t care for this turn of events.
Helmer Narholz (a U.S.-based Austrian) weaves a stylish ghost story replete with sex, drugs, dry humor and proudly over-the-top spooky music (by his brother). Motivations continue to ring true however peculiar the proceedings. Wintry setting reinforces the agreeably eerie atmosphere. German title translates literally as “footsteps in the snow.”