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Most of this has been done before; this movie is just another sorting
of the various elements. Psychic character, house is an entity itself,
paranormal investigators, TV show fantasy gets a dose of what it's been
mocking, one character turns into a nutty zombie, etc. But still, this
SyFy original really isn't bad.
Events are paced well, and things are revealed in a measured logical manner that maintains interest and fuels the action. The film is just graphic enough to be scary, without the over the top gratuitous blood bath gross-out approach. Somebody actually took time to develop a plot, and the acting is surprisingly decent. Characters are intentionally written as obnoxious, so you never really care gets eliminated. This allows the film to focus more on some innovative ways to knock people off. And you'll need a score card to keep track of the body count.
Not groundbreaking; it's fast-food horror, and you'll likely forget about the movie within two hours or so after viewing. But it's still entertaining enough to get a thumbs up.
Anyone who watches original SyFy movies knows what to expect - a low
budget look, often a poor script and average to below average acting.
No one watches an original SyFy film for greatness - it's just
shameless entertainment even if that entertainment comes from how bad
the movie is and House of Bones is really no different.
Basically, there is a TV show called Sinister Sites that goes to 'haunted' houses, films footage and airs what they found. Up till the latest house, the crew hadn't really found anything spooky and relied on smoke machines and tactics (always shoot at night) to drum up the scare factor and manipulate their nothing findings into an interesting show for viewers to watch. The ratings for the show were dropping so the show added a pretty female psychic to the team (Charisma Carpenter) and also decided that rather than stand behind a green screen and host the show, the host would actually go to the locations as well.
Of course THIS house is not like the others - it's actually HAUNTED. People have been disappearing from this home for years (slaves, prostitutes, children) with the last person disappearing in 1950 - a little boy. Things immediately seem odd when the refrigerator is stocked full of fresh produce/food despite no one having lived there in decades. Then, as the crew starts setting up cameras and devices throughout the house, one of the members goes MISSING! .. and let the craziness ensue.
I can not stress enough that if you want to watch this movie because you like Charisma Carpenter, just pass. Although she's technically in most of the movie, she doesn't really do anything. She's the psychic and she spends most of the movie randomly walking through the house getting vibes saying nothing other than the occasional 'We need to leave' or 'This house is evil' and is often randomly in the background of scenes where the other actors are actually doing/saying things. She doesn't have much dialogue and doesn't really actually do anything beyond what an extra could handle till maybe the last twenty minutes and even then, it's nothing to write home about. Just a fair warning seeing as how this movie is horrible. No reason to watch for her since it's not worth it - trust me.
In the end, you have a stupid, cheaply made SyFy movie that completely falls apart in the past 3rd of the film. It gets too ridiculous and stupid to be taken even partially serious and by the end you will probably be laughing like me at how DUMB it is. Just pass. 3/10
House of Bones isn't terrible. That might usually be the best thing I
can say about it, but the writers and director do deserve a little
credit. The direction is competent and the cinematography is actually
impressive for a straight-to-TV feature (meaning it doesn't look like
crap or made rushed or hyper-stylized or tinted or whatever). And the
script has a few legitimately funny lines of dialog between the baffled
crew members on the reality TV show about to film an episode on a
haunted-HUNGRY house (must emphasize hungry as it needs to eat). And
when it comes time to get to the gore and effects and some of the usual
lot of chincy CGI, it's not half-bad. And yet the script does falter
when it comes time to really get to internal logic, or to explaining
things in exposition, or bringing on the stereotypical a-hole TV show
host who comes in the last third of the movie for a lot of useless
yammering until his fate comes clear.
But most depressing of all is seeing Charisma Carpenter here. She's never been a Shakespearean thespian or anything, but she's never needed to be. Featured on Buffy and Angel for many of their best seasons, she's always been a solid actress for those and other shows. But here she looks kind of bored and almost a little sad to be having the dubious pleasure of starring in a straight-to-SyFy channel movie. While her fate isn't quite as abysmal as her co-stars on those shows (Amber Benson in Gryphon and Nicholas Brendon in Fire Serpent), it's no great shakes for her character, a psychic and ghost-talker of some kind who should be leaving the house the moment she starts coughing up blood, but stays on for the good (or bad) of those around her in this crazy old piece of property. She doesn't bring the film down, but it's hard for her to do anything to bring up the standard at best so-so at worst stupid and laughable piece of horror drek before her.
I would simply suggest watching this movie for what it is, a simple low budget horror movie. Everything in this is just correct... not bad or not that good. The story is pretty much classic , a haunted house, but they had a few thing to make it goes out of the ordinary. Special Effects are neither awesome but not bad at all, they are lets say believable. Actors where average at best but you are not watching an horror movie for its acting right? Charisma Carpenter should had less clothes on but well... lol. Seriously i enjoyed this little movie on a late night, it won't remain burned in my head for long, but it was entertaining on the moment.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I just finished watching "House of Bones" and I must say that I was impressed. When I tuned in I thought that I was just watching another boring, pointless Sci-Fi movie or "SyFy" as they now call it. The acting was way better than I was expecting Charisma was great as always, but the others were surprisingly good also. Some of the Special effects were a little cheesy but for a "SyFy" they were great. I was on the edge of my seat from the very start when the boy went to get his baseball and all the way to the very end. The story & plot of a haunted house that wasn't just haunted but very much alive was familiar, probably used before, but still very interesting & in it's own way unique. To sum it up this movie was AMAZING for what it was. Even if it was in the theaters it was still worth watching! I recommend it to anyone who loves horror flicks.
"House of Bones" is a 90 minute, 2010, TV-14 horror movie that was
filmed in Crowley, La, which is located in South Central Louisiana.
The main characters are Heather, a psychic, played by Charisma Carpenter, which you most likely remember from not only "Buffy", but "Angel" as well or "Greek" another T.V. series. I must admit at this point that I was watching the almost horrible "The Hills Have Eyes II" on Sy-Fy this past Saturday night, when I got up to check on what was coming up next. I looked up the Sy-Fy schedule on-line and got this name and then used IMDb to check it out. Seeing that it had Charisma in it, I decided to stay up and watch it. Turned out to be a pretty decision.
Corin Nemec, whom I must admit, I don't really care for, was another semi-big-name and he did play his part to the hilt. Most of the rest of the cast, I didn't have a clue about, but kudos to them as they did a really good job in making this a decent horror movie.
Like others have said, it has been done before and in many cases much better. Without giving anything away, it feels like "Rose Red" meets "Ghost Hunters." Actually it is what I wish "Ghost Hunters" was more like, but that might just push the envelope a bit too much. None the less, this was a decent, no, not great, but decent enough horror movie for me to stay up and watch and if I found it at my local video store or the local Wal-Mart, in their bargain bin for under $5.00, I would pick it up and add it to my B-move collection.
I will say that I thought the house was pretty nice and the well-house was a nice twist as well.
Redbox rental. One technique was used that I thought was original was
the perception of the actor compared to what is advanced in the plot!
Totally different! I don't want to give it away, you will see what I
I enjoyed the movie! Just got through TRYING to watch "The Vow" (gag, turned off after a respectable 45 minute attempt) and "Killjoyhell" (sorta funny, but after an even more respectable 55 minutes I cut off) but I was actually able to watch this all the way through. CC may of had a little to do with it, but watching the entire movie is a plus recommendation!
Certainly the plot is familiar and it is not scary to the viewer- it is not meant to be. Which means there are no annoying loud sound effect on some stupid event meant to jolt (5 year old's at this point in the movie business). Instead, you watch some jaded show-crew and producer face something unexpected. Some fine women actors top it off.
This is an interesting take on the haunted house motif. Here the house
"lives" off the bodies of its victims. Unfortunately this house doesn't
take many victims on its own and when it does, its doesn't do as much
as it could with them. For example, when a couple of bodies are
disposed of within the house, there's an off-screen crunching sound and
signs that the house is growing stronger from the nourishment, but
these scenes are not that creepy.
Also there are a couple of scenes that are entirely pointless and make little sense overall including a black shadow that roams around in a couple of scenes and tries to look scary but ultimately doesn't do anything.
The film does excel in showing how the house distracts and separates the group even after the protagonists tell themselves not to split up when searching the house. Also, I'm glad to finally see a movie that realizes that eye trauma does not necessarily equate to death.
A couple of lame jump scares aside, this film produces a creepy atmosphere similar to what Rose Red created, but not quite as intense as 1408. Its far from bad, but it could have been a lot better.
I had no particular expectations to the this movie, as it is a Syfy
The story seems like rip-off of "House of Haunted Hill" with some elements from "The Ring" tossed in just for good measure, sort of having potential and was not too shabby. The first two-thirds of the movie were rather interesting. Despite it being labelled as a horror movie, there was very little to scare you in it. No major shocks or frights. Nothing creepy or crawly, just some mediocre stuff going on, and with mediocre CGI to accompany it. Then throughout the last third of the movie it all fell to the ground in a most horrible way. The movie became so boring and stupid during the last third part.
As for the cast? Well, some did an alright job, except for Corin Nemec. Wow, he was so miscast for this role. He looked like he was struggling with insects inside his pants. It was physically embarrassing to watch his horrendous performance in this movie. He is semi-alright in comedies, but here it was terrible to behold his acting (or rather, lack thereof).
The setting of the movie was adequate. Would have worked better, if the house had a more dark and brooding appearance and feel to it.
The movie is lukewarm entertainment at best. Don't except any thrills or chills from it though. And don't expect a showcase of awesome effects. If the movie experience was to be compared to a roller-coaster ride, then the ride would have no steep hill or facedown plunges, just a plain leveled ride with little amusement. For a ghost movie, this was pretty lame. It pales in comparison to movies like "13 Ghosts", "House of Haunted Hill", "The Haunting" and such.
The most scared I was, was for concern if I would be able to keep myself awake through the entire movie.
To be honest, I was expecting House of Bones to be really bad. But actually, while heavily flawed it is not as bad as other SyFy movies. It is competently made, with decent editing and atmospheric lighting. Effects are kept at minimal and while nothing great when they are there they are much better than those in other SyFy efforts, not as fake-looking. Apart from an irritating performance from Corin Nemec and a disengaged Charisma Carpenter, the acting is about average, with nobody bad but also nobody standing out. The house is well-used and quite creepy, and the well-house twist was pretty nice. However, the sound effects and such are rather obvious sometimes, and the film is further brought down by a cheesy script, really obnoxious and stereotypical characters(especially the TV host), a story that while not dull is predictable, implausible(this may have been avoided if some of the ideas took slower to unfold) and completely let down by a suspense-less, downbeat and utterly ridiculous final third and too many scenes that are rather tame in alternative to unsettling. All in all, better than expected but nothing all that special at the end of the day. 4/10 Bethany Cox
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