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The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer
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The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer (TV) More at IMDbPro »

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16 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

A "creepy" movie, not a horror flick.

Author: mellyjc from San Jose, CA
10 November 2003

The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer definitely held my interest enough and made me curious to see Rose Red. In my opinion, Ellen Rimbauer was the better of the two.

I loved the historical aspect of the movie, giving a definite history and personality to the house than a typical haunted house movie does. It was unique and realistic in this way, perhaps one of the reasons I preferred it to "Rose Red".

This movie contains much more mystery than "Rose Red" and is much less typical. Don't go into it expecting a regular horror/thriller movie, because that's not what it is. It's a great movie to make you think and wonder about the house, and does no more than insinuate answers, which leaves you in the mood, thinking, and drawing your own conclusions to the story, which I find much more satisfying.

Left me dreaming about the Winchester Mystery House. Believable, unique and thought-provoking. 8.5/10.

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8 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Prequel to Rose Red

Author: lola-rose from United States
10 October 2005

The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer is the prequel to Stephen King's Rose Red. This film gives the back story of what happened before there was a house, while it was being built and all the additions that it erected. The film sheds more light on what kind of a person that John Rimbauer really was and the trials and tribulations that Ellen and her faithful maid Sukeena had to deal with. People who want to watch this film should first watch Stephen King's Rose Red and if they like it, continue on with the book this movie is based on. The book was written by Ridley Pearson and helps explain things that might be unclear if you haven't read the book. After reading the book watch this. I think that it's quite good, of course some things are different from the book and movie, but mostly for time constraints. All in all it's a good film if you're interested in the history of Rose Red, though it shouldn't be viewed by those under 15 in my opinion. Hope that you enjoy it.

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9 out of 15 people found the following review useful:


Author: ( from United States
16 May 2003

I am disappointed because the film never explains the disappearances or the circumstances around Rose Red. I think it would have been better if they tried to convey the cause of the mysterious disappearance of April, Ellen, Sukeena, and anybody else who vanished for no reason. I wish Rose Red existed so we can visit but it's too far-fetched and it doesn't explain the paranormal around the house to the audience. I admired the actresses who played Ellen and Sukeena but I never did understand the relationship as a whole. I felt there were too many unanswered questions about the whole house in general. The house Rose Red mini-series should have answered what happened to the people trapped in the house whether by body or spirits. I was hoping for answers but I didn't get them.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A little style but ultimately it's a flat experience.

Author: Spikeopath from United Kingdom
4 March 2008

I have certainly seen bigger budgeted movies in the genre far worse than this effort, it is competently acted, has some nice visual touches, and the director knows how to best utilise the monolithic house. That said, without genuine suspense it is hard to succeed in the genre, so without a fearful story as well it has little to no chance of making it. The crux of the matter is that the story really isn't that interesting, we have seen and read about this plot on numerous occasions, so for a TV movie to win you round it really is asking way too much. Basic ingredients are all here, creepy house, pretty wife confused, servant with big role to play, and of course the genre staple of sexual deviant husband with dark overtones. The film moves along sedately which is fine if the pay off is worth the wait, sadly it isn't here and it limps over the finish line instead of leaping over as the build up had promised.

Just below average for me, but a gentle round of applause for effort to those involved, 4/10.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Stylish, handsomely produced thriller using Stephen King characters...

Author: Neil Doyle from U.S.A.
18 January 2009

Using the Stephen King characters from "Rose Red," THE DIARY OF ELLEN RIMBAUER is a prequel to that little saga of a monstrous house that seems to be devouring its victims.

This version of the Rose Red story is handsomely photographed and well acted but suffers from a script that never really bothers to explain anything. The viewer is left pondering plot details up until the very end, when again there is a letdown of even more ambiguity.

Nevertheless, it manages to impress with the performances, the settings, the costumes and the plot itself is a mixed bag of so many thrillers from the past, even including the more genteel JANE EYRE or any of the Victorian novels that dealt with a house of dark decay and a sinister leading man.

STEVEN BRAND is the darkly handsome head of the household whose soul is corrupted by carnal desires, an unfaithful man who brings his bride LISA BRENNER to live in Rose Red, where she is gradually subjected to all sorts of vague fears and terrors and things that go bump in the night.

It's really silly stuff, not to be taken seriously, but does give rise to some goosebumps once in awhile. Eventually, the murky plot just gets muddier and all of the elements mesh into one big, slow-paced thriller that is efficient enough to produce a few chills but too ambiguous for its own good.

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7 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

not exactly disappointing...

Author: marinanenna120 from United States
9 December 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie was certainly interesting to say the least. Although I have not seen Rose Red, i thought it was an okay movie. To clarify some of the comments that were made about this movie, The film DOES explain the disappearances of the characters indirectly. The characters that disappeared had either a close relationship to Ellen, or had something to do with her husband (who had a very large sexual appetite). Rose Red is more or less a spirit controlling the house that was quite fond of Ellen. The house grew to love Ellen. The mysterious happenings occurred so that Rose Red could get her to see that her husband was really a shaky and unfaithful character. They also occurred because the house wanted Ellen to remain fond of only Rose Red, which is why April disappeared as well. Basically, Rose Red grew jealous of Ellen's and April's relationship. Sukeena never disappeared, Ellen's husband just had her put in jail after April disappeared thinking that she was the cause.

With certain horror movies, every detail, every word should be payed attention to, otherwise you will have questions afterwards.

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7 out of 12 people found the following review useful:


Author: brianh-9 from Mississippi, USA
3 April 2004

I came across this film yesterday and wondered how good it would be. Being a prequel to the uneven "Rose Red" this film does create the story that was talked about in the miniseries. It does have the obvious budget constraints,but overall the film isn't too bad. It's good for what it is. The film has good atmosphere but not enough thrills to be quite compelling. There's just not enough here to really like or dislike. The acting is competent,and story is alright. I just needed more to enjoy. This is a TV film so I shouldn't take too much from it. I really wasn't quite satisfied. I think the main problem is the film doesn't reach more to ultimately grip the viewer. It's pretty straightforward and not very mysterious. If you have seen "Rose Red" I say skip it. **/*****

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7 out of 12 people found the following review useful:


Author: RhymesWithBlinvy from Canada
12 May 2003

This movie fails to capture any bit of the mystery and intrigue of the best selling book it was based upon. The acting was bland, the effects unappealing and the story uninteresting. I found myself flipping through the channels I was so bored with it. It's a shame the movie turned out so bad because the book was so wonderfully done that I found myself believing that Ellen Rimbauer actually existed and wrote those words herself. The movie did not capture Ellen's innocence and naiveness when she first entered into John's life nor her gradual descent into insanity. My advice is to pass seeing this and go read the book.

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Sometimes, sequels are WAY BETTER than their originals.

Author: Carycomic from Torrington, CT, USA
13 May 2003

This definitely qualifies as one of them. Twice as good as the mini-series, and only one-third the length! Good period detail. Suitably creepy all the way through. I give it four stars, to the original's two-and-a-quarter!

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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

A Decent Prequel But Lacking Something.

Author: tom sawyer ( from Waterford, Michigan
13 May 2003

The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer was supposed to be the prequel to answer some of the questions about Rose Red's history from last years mini-series. Instead, it seems like Rose Red answers more questions about The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer. The story and acting were well done and pretty easy to follow. To say the least, it does keep your interest. It starts out with the building of Rose Red and how there was a nurder the day the a young and engaged Ellen Rimbauer first lays eyes on the place. The Diary of ER was entertaining, it still left a few unanswered questions and a wanting for more. My first and perhaps biggest complaint was the fact the place and the atmosphere seemed foreboding and dark, there was not as much a supernatural element to it as Rose Red. People disappeared in it, but if I recall correctly one was a famous lady who disappeared. Instead we get to see the horrors of how much a philandering, sex addicted and possibly sypohilis infected bastard John Rimbauer was and how everybody he slept with then disappeared in the house. He was basically the worst seen being in the Rose Red mansion. The movie also came up short in that it stopped before Ellen and her faithful friend from Africa also disappeared or had something happen to them in the house. There was not the horror or even suspense element that had been in Rose Red.The house's history had been made somehow less scary than what it had been in the subsequent movie that followed it. Like, I said the movie was decent, but it left you wanting more of everything. It was lacking in detail and horror. It was a decent movie about a mysterious place and the sadness suffered by a women with a sex addicted and philandering husband but little else. A little more hooror and suspense, not to mention detail would have been nice.

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