Eight years after the millionaire Mr. Price rented Hill House for a macabre birthday party, a team of researchers dares to come in, looking for a precious statue, a satanic idol who is believed to possess demonic powers.
When an eccentric millionaire offer a group of opposites $1,000,000 to spend the night in a so called "Haunted House" with a murderous past, they figure it is a quick way to get quick money and leave. All of them are sure it is some made up story just to mess with their heads a little and test their courage. But, once they stay in the house they start to think about the mistake they made in coming there when mysterious things start to happen. Written by
(at around 12 mins) The original guest list that Price comes up with, before being deleted, has references to other works of horror. Mary Seward is a reference to both Mary Shelley, who wrote Frankenstein, and Dr. Seward from Dracula, who was a doctor specializing in the treatment of the insane. And Valdemar Tymrak is a reference to the Edgar Allan Poe story, The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar, about a man who finds himself in an undead state after being hypnotized at the moment of death. See more »
(at around 1h 22 mins) In the final chase, Sara's jacket disappears between shots (shots where she loses the jacket were cut). See more »
After the final credits, there is an additional scene that features Steven and Evelyn strapped down on Vannacut's vivisection table. The scene ends with Vannacut watching as one hears Steven and Evelyn's screams. See more »
For once, a movie even scarier and more horrifying than the trailers for it. BUT......
The whole was not equal to the sum of its parts. Geoffrey Rush (what's HE doing in this movie?!) as Steven Price is actually a very interesting character, which can be attributed to either the effort the script takes to set him up, and/or the brilliance of the Oscar-winning actor in the role. Price's wife, Evelyn, gets similar treatment, but it is here the screenwriter(s?) get lazy.
The strangers in the house DO get a minimal amount of character set-up, i.e. who they are, what they do... but this information is never touched on again. One would HOPE that all ths information is being displayed for some higher purpose-- the background of these five strangers, the cat-and-mouse game played by Mr. & Mrs. Price, and Mr. Price's fascination with fear that is set up so intensely in the movie's opening minutes.
But alas, none of this GOES anywhere. It is all completely independent from the agenda of the House when I felt like it should all tie together, somehow. There are three forces at work here-- the ghosts who haunt the house, the humans who are trapped in it, and the Darkness that lives beneath it. These are all separate entities, we find, but for what purpose? This movie could have gone on another ten minutes, some loose ends could have been tied up, and I could have given it a much higher score.
Instead, what was truly an INTENSE build-up, sputters out at the very end of the movie. It didn't even feel like an end, it just felt like the movie stopped, and we're left without an explanation to what happens to the survivors-- including the most interesting character in the movie, the House itself.
7 out of 10. Fun to watch, truly terrifying, but incomplete.
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