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Now playing in theaters is director Gil Kenan’s (Monster House) contemporary remake of the classic horror film Poltergeist. Produced by Sam Raimi, the redo stars Sam Rockwell and Rosemarie DeWitt as parents trying to fend off a spiritual invasion and save their eight-year-old daughter (Kennedi Clements) from the evil forces trying to take her. The film also stars Jared Harris, Saxon Sharbino, Kyle Catlett, Susan Heyward and Nicholas Braun. While some might be nervous about the remake, I was actually surprised by how well it’s put together. However, it’s definitely aimed at a younger audience, and it’s important to know that going in. While I already posted the first part of my interview with Sam Rockwell and Rosemarie DeWitt, it’s now time to watch them play “Save or Kill.” If you haven’t seen it yet, the game reveals which franchises, characters or bands someone »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
On Thursday, I saw the Gil Kenan (Monster House, City of Ember)-directed movie Poltergeist, a remake of Tobe Hooper's 1982 masterpiece. David Lindsay-Abaire (Oz the Great and Powerful, Rise of the Guardians) re-adapted the script from the original film, which had been conceived and co-written by Steven Spielberg. I expected the new movie to completely suck, so I'm surprised to disagree with many of my fellows and say that it's not great, but it's sort of okay.
If you haven't watched the 1982 Poltergeist, which stars Craig T. Nelson, JoBeth Williams and Zelda Rubinstein, do yourself a favor and stop reading now. Find it on disc or online. It's the apex of family horror films and the greatest haunted house movie ever made, so it's little surprise Kenan would be chosen to direct the remake, based on his earlier Monster House. Hooper's original figures heavily in this review, and you »
- Mike Saulters
“Tomorrowland” doesn’t have as promising a future as Disney might have anticipated.
The George Clooney-starrer is being outperformed at the U.S. box office this Memorial Day holiday by the second weekend of “Pitch Perfect 2.” While “Tomorrowland” was expected to open to $45 million — already slightly below recent forecasts — it now looks likely to reel in less than $40 million, giving the “Pitch Perfect” sequel a narrow edge with $41 million-plus.
The two films were neck and neck on Friday in as tight a race as it gets, with “Tomorrowland” earning $9.73 million, while “Pitch Perfect 2” brought in $9.66 million. The weekend’s other newcomer, “Poltergeist,” was a close third, but will likely finish the weekend in fourth with about $29 million.
The tentpole “Tomorrowland,” which carries a hefty $180 million pricetag, had been shrouded in mystery leading up to its release and is likely suffering from being an unfamiliar property with no established brand, »
- Maane Khatchatourian
Chicago – Whether it’s the 1982 original or the remake just released in theaters today to the wrath of numerous fans, the lesson of “Poltergeist” remains the same: Don’t do a half-assed job when relocating skeletons for corporate greed, or suffer the supernatural consequences.
Fear not, however, as this is one remake that doesn’t just dress up a nostalgic skeleton for the modern horror crowd, but one that reminisces, and looks forward, with a mostly intelligent, genuine heart.
Produced by Sam Raimi and crediting its story to the one made Steven Spielberg, this remake of the 1982 Tobe Hooper film involves a new family, the Bowens, as they move into a house with its own bad mojo. There’s a weird electric air in their new home, which husband Eric (Sam Rockwell) and wife Amy (Rosemarie DeWitt) have brought young Madison (Kennedi Clements), son Griffin (Kyle Catlett), and older daughter Kendra (Saxon Sharbino) into. »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
"They’re here." The 1982 horror classic Poltergeist, directed by Toby Hooper of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre fame, and highly influenced by Steven Spielberg, has been an influence for many horror films since its release. It's no surprise, especially for a horror film, that a remake would be inevitable. How does one fill the shoes of the original Poltergeist? You don’t. It’s impossible. Director Gil Kenan, who directed 2006’s animated Monster House, takes on the unenvied task of updating Poltergeist. With a few accomplished scenes and set pieces, this updated product hits all the highlights, but looses all the substance that made the original a portrait of quaint suburban life turned into a nightmare.
The Bowen family move into a suburban community and strange occurrences begin happening in their new home. Eric (Sam Rockwell) is looking for a fresh start after being recently laid off from his job »
- Monte Yazzie
Tobe Hooper’s Poltergeist was one of my first horror movies and perhaps the first to give me nightmares (thankfully there’s 24-hour programming now because the thought of that late night TV sign-off still gives me the creeps). When you hold a film so near and dear, it’s tough not to walk into a screening of the remake ready to tear it apart for exploiting the original, but the new Poltergeist is actually a nice surprise. Is it as good as the original? No, but it does rock some fantastic performances, a very appealing sense of humor and a whole bunch of fun scares, too. It certainly won’t wind up becoming a classic like the original, but it’s still a good time if you’re looking for an entertaining thrill. Similar to the 1982 original, Gil Kenan’s Poltergeist focuses on a family of five, Eric (Sam Rockwell »
- Perri Nemiroff
Now playing in theaters is director Gil Kenan’s (Monster House) contemporary remake of the classic horror film Poltergeist. Produced by Sam Raimi, the redo stars Sam Rockwell and Rosemarie DeWitt as parents trying to fend off a spiritual invasion and save their eight-year-old daughter (Kennedi Clements) from the evil forces trying to take her. The film also stars Jared Harris, Saxon Sharbino, Kyle Catlett, Susan Heyward and Nicholas Braun. While some might be nervous about the remake, I was actually surprised by how well it’s put together. However, it’s definitely aimed at a younger audience, and it’s important to know that going in. A few days ago I sat down with Gil Kenan for a video interview. He talked about his first cut of the film, deleted scenes, what he learned from the test screening process, how he’s releasing an extended cut on Blu-ray, what »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
20th Century Fox and MGM released their new horror/thriller film, "Poltergeist," into theaters today, May 22nd,2015, and all the reviews are in from the top, major movie critics in the biz. It turns out that only about half of them liked it, giving it an overall 49 score out of a possible 100 across 19 reviews at the Metacritic.com site. The film stars: Sam Rockwell, Jared Harris, Rosemarie DeWitt, Saxon Sharbino and Jane Adams. We've supplied blurbs from a couple of the critics,below. Justin Lowe from The Hollywood Reporter, gave it a 70 grade. He said: "While Hooper favored shock value and jump scares, Kenan and cinematographer Javier Aguirresarobe construct far more fluid sequences as the camera glides and hovers over its subjects, reserving the most impactful shots for the climactic scenes, particularly a concluding sequence that’s particularly thrilling." Clark Collis over at Entertainment Weekly, gave it a 67 grade, stating: »
Director Gil Kenan's work on "Poltergeist" is, like his work on "City Of Ember" and "Monster House," smart and focused and technically adept. He has done about as good a job as anyone would have done with David Lindsay-Abaire's screenplay based on the 1982 film, and the same is true of the cast. Sam Rockwell, Rosemarie DeWitt, Jared Harris, and Jane Adams are all very good at what they do. The various visual effects houses and tech departments on the film all did what they were hired to do, and taken as a whole, "Poltergeist" is professional and slick and entirely fine. It's also unnecessary in every way. There are a few moments here and there where Kenan pieces together a few images or a few new ideas, and in those moments, we get a glimpse of the potential for doing a new "Poltergeist." For the most part, though, »
- Drew McWeeny
What made Tobe Hooper's -- or Steven Spielberg's, depending on whom you ask -- Poltergeist so iconic was how it blended a mix of humor, heart and character with the same atmosphere and tension. It became the rare mainstream Hollywood thriller with just the right technical and creative talent to shine. In turn, Gil Kenan's 2015 remake is disappointing in how it's basically the opposite: cold, generic and entirely ho-hum. It's by no means the worst horror remake of late, but that it has the skills behind-and-in-front of the camera to exceed and only settles on mediocrity makes this re-imagining almost as degrading. Kenan's take follows the Bowen family, which includes the recently unemployed Eric (Sam Rockwell), his wife Amy (Rosemarie DeWitt) and their three children -- older daughter Kendra (Saxon Sharbino), son Griffin (Kyle Catlett) and youngest daughter Madison (Kennedi Clements) -- as they've just moved into a new suburban home. »
- Will Ashton
If familiarity breeds contempt then overfamiliarity brings boredom. This lazy, unimaginative remake of horror classic Poltergeist supplies snores instead of shudders and inertia instead of intrigue, failing to muster any significant fresh ideas or sustain any tension.
Moving into a property built on an ancient burial ground is a marginally more doomed accommodation arrangement than a flatshare with Katie Hopkins and Perez Hilton. As per its predecessor's plot, the 2015 version positions a wholesome American family in this precarious scenario and unleashes a procession of progressively supernatural proceedings on them.
Whereas Steven Spielberg and Tobe Hooper's original transfixed viewers with its imaginative sense of dread and foreboding atmosphere, Gil Kenan's remake spectacularly fails to instill a sense of jeopardy despite some smart camerawork and solid performances from all the leads, »
Here are the films opening theatrically in the U.S. the week of Friday, May 22. [Synopses provided by distributor unless listed otherwise.] Wide Poltergeist Director: Gil Kenan Cast: Sam Rockwell, Rosemarie DeWitt, Jared Harris, Kennedi Clements, Kyle Catlett, Saxon Sharbino Synopsis: "The Bowens are like any other Californian suburban family. But one night their youngest, 5-year-old Madison, hears a voice from inside the television set. At first there is an invasion of friendly spirits, but then a force of evil threatens to destroy them." Tomorrowland Director: Brad Bird Cast: Britt Robertson, George Clooney, Thomas Robinson, Hugh Laurie, Raffey Cassidy, Kathryn Hahn Synopsis: "Bound by a shared destiny, a bright, optimistic teen bursting with scientific curiosity and a former boy-genius inventor jaded by disillusionment embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space that exists in their »
- Steve Greene
In several independent haunted house films, admirers of horror often accept greener acting, looking beyond lesser performances for well-crafted ideas and atmosphere. Is it only fair and balanced then that a studio offering should prove the opposite? With a similar easy chemistry and authenticity of the Freelings, Rosemarie DeWitt, Sam Rockwell and kids Saxon Sharbino,…
The post Review: Poltergeist 2015 appeared first on Shock Till You Drop. »
- Samuel Zimmerman
Remakes are frequently dismissed sight unseen because they show a lack of creativity and far too many have proven themselves to be outright stinkers, but there have been enough exceptions to the rule over the years to warrant giving each reboot a chance to stand on its own. While many are pure cash grabs the successes are often ones that wisely targeted lesser films from the past in the hopes of improving them for today’s audiences. Tobe Hooper’s 1982 haunted house classic Poltergeist is in no way a lesser film, and even today — and even with some dated visual effects — the movie delivers a fine balance of fun, scares and heart. The point being that the only area ripe for improvement is the special effects, and in a world where anything and everything is made “better” by CG that appears to be enough of a reason to make a movie. But »
- Rob Hunter
Hitting theaters today is 20th Century Fox and MGM’s big screen remake of Tobe Hooper’s 1982 Poltergeist. But is it a remake after all? That’s one of the questions we’re asking director Gil Kenan and stars Sam Rockwell (The Way, Way Back, Iron Man 2) and Rosemarie DeWitt (The Odd Life of Timothy Green, Kill the Messenger)…
It takes a brave filmmaker to take on remaking Poltergeist. Thankfully, the fine gentleman who brought us Monster House and City Of Embers decided to have while still paying respect to the original. While the new film certainly has a different tone from Tobe Hooper directed, Steven Spielberg produced classic, in many ways this feels like a homage to it. And it also happens to feature a strong cast, with Sam Rockwell, Rosemarie DeWitt, Jared Harris and Jane Adams giving serious cred to this »
I’m “biast” (con): big fan of the 1982 original
(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
I don’t understand why this movie exists. There’s no reason for it. I mean, I get the business reason why someone decided it was a good idea to cash in on a nearly 35-year-old movie that many critics (including me) and fans consider one of the greatest horror movies ever made. But no one on the supposed creative side of this “new” Poltergeist could be bothered to even pretend to have something to add, something fresh to say that wasn’t said back in 1982 about the trials of a suburban American family whose house is menaced by nasty spirits. »
- MaryAnn Johanson
Well, the big studios have finally gotten around to another summer cinema staple. Let’s see, for 2015 we’ve had a couple of sequels (Avengers: Age Of Ultron and Pitch Perfect 2), a reboot (Mad Max: Fury Road), and a brassy lady-driven comedy (Hot Pursuit). So now, it’s time for that other, often dreaded, “R-word”: the remake (usually called a “re-imagining” by sneaky PR types). Oh, and this is another 1980’s classic like January 2014’s Robocop. But we’ll go back a few years before that shoot-em-up satire of 1987. It’s 1982, the summer of Spielberg, when he had his biggest (at that time) box office smash with E.T. The Extra-terrestrial. Now Mr. S wrote and directed that one, but a few weeks before that opened, he produced and wrote another huge hit. Now, yet another prominent blockbuster director, Sam Raimi, is the producer of this new scare-fest. To paraphrase »
- Jim Batts
The players have changed but the story remains the same with a few slight alterations. And I do mean slight rendering this remake ultimately pointless. The Bowen family is down on their luck. Eric (Sam Rockwell) has recently been laid off from his longterm gig with John Deere and Amy (Rosemarie DeWitt) is a struggling writer and stayathome mom. Their three children Kendra (Saxon Sharbino) Griffin (Kyle Catlett) and Maddy (Kennedi Clements) arent too jazzed to make this move to a lesser neighborhood a lesser house and a lesser life. But they are a unit and so they stick together. »
Though the calendar dawn of summer is still a month away, the 2015 summer movie season is already in full swing. So far, it’s off to a pretty strong start: whether you’re looking for a new tentpole release from Marvel, the thunderous return of a long-dormant franchise, or some brainy sci-fi, the multiplex has got you covered. All the same, it’ll take a number of other surprises and successes before 2015’s blockbuster season earns the same hallowed reputation as 1982’s “Summer of Spielberg.” E.T., Star Trek II, and Rocky III all landed within a two-week span of one another, making for a summer slate so crowded that even the year’s 8th highest-grossing film, Poltergeist, could seem like an afterthought.
- Sam Woolf
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