"lights are on but nobody's home..."
The Amityville Horror
Dir. Andrew Douglas
Dir. Andrew Douglas
Reviewed by Matt Adcock
"Based on the true story" but only just...
My mind reeling from images of grisly murder, committed right here in the house I now live in – I look again at the demonically distorted faces of my family and know what I have to do… *
The Amityville Horror – is your average ‘all you can eat’ buffet of freak out / fast cut ‘jumps’ and plodding plot that over explains everything except why it takes so long for those living in the infamous house to see that step dad George (played by Nightstalker Ryan Reynolds) has gone on a one way trip to psychoville and isn’t coming back without his Shining axe…
High production values and tasty women including Melissa George (the mum) and Rachel Nichols (the babysitter) stop this from being a complete car wreck of a movie but there is very little here to commend.
In fact, despite a couple of really good ‘everyone in the audience jumps and yelps’ moments, I found the original film had a much more intense and disturbing atmosphere. And as for the priest who tries and fails to battle the house of evil – his part is so fleeting that he might as well have not bothered (he could have phoned in his only memorable line about the teddy bear - you know being from the grave etc, oh don't worry about it...).
Still, apparently there are lots of people out there who are interested enough in homicide inducing houses – this opened at number one in the box office in the US last week and number 2 in the UK. People, come on, there are much better films on offer out there…
* What I have to do of course is find a copy of “Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus” which was also made by Andrew Douglas and not only has a much better title – it actually sounds like a fascinating exploration of the US American South which offers up music, truck stops and Pentecostal fanaticism… Now that’s potentially really scary stuff!!
Darkmatt Rating: öö (catch them and kill them, or don’t bother)
Of course the whole Amityville haunting is all bollocks according to this site
Horro fans might like this - Matt Adcock Meets Chucky
Reviews of better films and other stuff you might want to read indexed here