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An American Haunting (2005)

PG-13  |   |  Horror, Mystery, Thriller  |  5 May 2006 (USA)
5.0
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Ratings: 5.0/10 from 21,249 users   Metascore: 38/100
Reviews: 745 user | 123 critic | 18 from Metacritic.com

Based on the true events of the only case in US History where a spirit caused the death of a man.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Betsy Bell / Entity Voice
...
...
Zoe Thorne ...
Theny Thorn (as Zoë Thorne)
Gaye Brown ...
Sam Alexander ...
Miquel Brown ...
...
Elder #1
...
Madalina Stan ...
Ethereal Girl
...
Partygoer (as Phillip Hurd-Wood)
Vlad Cruceru ...
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Storyline

In 2006, in Red River, Tennessee, a teenager has frequent nightmares. Her mother reads an old letter from 1817 written by her ancestor, Lucy Bell. After a dispute of lands judged by the church, her husband John Bell is cursed by his opponent Kathe Batts, who has a fame of being a witch. From this moment on, an entity threatens John and her daughter Betsy Bell, attacking the girl during the nights. With the support of Betsy's school teacher Richard Powell, who tries to find rational explanations for the manifestation; her brother John Bell Jr.; and their friend James Johnston, who unsuccessfully tries to exorcize the entity from the house, the family does their best to protect Betsy in the haunted house. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Possession Knows No Bounds


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense terror sequences and thematic material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

| | |

Language:

Release Date:

5 May 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Apariciones  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$14,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£541,446 (UK) (14 April 2006)

Gross:

$430,745 (Brazil) (6 October 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (unrated)

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie is actually based on a purportedly true story. Andrew Jackson was quoted as saying, "I would rather take on the entire English Fleet than stay one night at the Bell House," however his presence at the house is disputed and there are no official records that confirm he was actually present or witnessed any supernatural activity. The haunting is documented in M. V. Ingram's 1894 book, An Authenticated History of The Famous Bell Witch. This movie was based on the book by Brent Monahan,The Bell Witch: An American Haunting the Famous Bell Witch. However, the Ingram book has been called into question by researchers, who have noted that it's based on secondhand accounts and that no firsthand accounts to the haunting survive, and records from the time have not supported the story of the haunting. The Ingram book calls on quotes from letters and diaries but those documents no longer exist (if they ever did) and it is impossible to verify if the haunting actually happened or if it was a hoax or an early urban legend. Some researchers have even raised the possibility that the Ingram book was actually a work of fiction now mistakenly believed to be a factual account. See more »

Goofs

In one scene the sky is shown with clouds, and an obvious jet stream or contrail streak to the left. See more »

Quotes

Richard Powell: [of Betsy] Can she love me?
Lucy Bell: She will.
See more »

Connections

Version of Bell Witch: The Movie (2007) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A Great and Haunitng Film That Will Leave You Scared For Days!
12 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I was at the Sunday afternoon screening of "An American Haunting" at the AFI Fest in Los Angeles. I was waiting to see this film as I love this genre and am a fan of Sissy Spacek (Carrie) and Donald Sutherland. I did some research on the legend of the Bell Witch before seeing the film, and more after, so I had an idea of what to expect. First, I have to say that Rachel Hurd Wood was fantastic as Betsy. I did not see Peter Pan, but for 14 years old, she put on a restrained and haunting performance which she should be commended for. Onto the film. This film was scary, scary, scary and creepy. I was thinking about it for three days after, and my friends and I even talked about it at lunch today a week later. It really stays with you, which I think is the sign of a good film. If you are looking for blood and guts, then it will not be for you. But, if you are looking for tension, suspense, and creepiness, then it's definitely for you. I saw it with three friends and we were all on the edge of our seats. I had nail marks from my friend Lisa who kept covering her eyes because she was so scared. I don't want to give anything away, but there is a surprise ending which I was happy to see they obviously built the film around, instead of just added it at the end like a lot of films do these days. It reminded me a lot of the "The Others" with Nicloe Kidman. Anyway, the film really delivers and it says something important at the same time. I think, having read some other comments that this film will appeal more to women. You will see why. I did think that the score was a little large at times, and that the sound was a little loud, but really good and effective, just loud. The cinematography was great, and the way the director moved the camera to create a spirit view, I thought was really good and fresh. There is a scene where the spirit tracks down one of the characters, and it was truly amazing! Having recently seen Emily Rose, I would have to say that this film was much better and would highly recommend it. I can't wait to have a chance to see it again. If I had to rate it, I would give it a 8.5 out of 10. Matilda.


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