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|Index||23 reviews in total|
Nothing really special here, a story about a haunted house, two
characters that weren't quite exploited enough, scares that came so
late and soft, a twist that didn't manage to stand tall.
It wanted to be something, you can clearly see it tried, but somewhere, it failed, somewhere along the plot development, when they tried to make it more than it could be. In the end it is a movie about a haunted house, so don't get your hopes too high, cause originality is something too hard to achieve, working around with just 2 actors make the viewer feel deserted, and scares that won't come when they suppose to, leave him even more alone.
Not so many reasons to recommend this one: yes, average horror at its best, a somewhat effort put into it, but still, it falls flat. Sorry to say so.
It will come down to everyone's personal opinion, but all horror movie fans, will feel that they didn't get the larger slice here.
An introverted teen (Harrison Gilbertson) connects with his new
neighbor (Liana Liberato), and together the couple begins to explore
the haunted house that his family has unknowingly just purchased.
There are some things worth liking about this film. The cinematographer is excellent, first of all, and the snow shots look great. Casting Liana Liberato was a wise move, as she has "the look" that could really take her places in the coming years. And the inclusion of the supernatural radio (for lack of a better term) was cool.
What was not appreciated was the writer's apparent influence from "American Horror Story". Maybe this is all coincidental, but the house full of ghosts, the strange neighbor, it all seemed very familiar. And not really in a good way. Other reviews have called the film unoriginal, and they are right. While few horror films are, this one is even more derivative than others.
Perhaps most strange of all was the poor advertising from IFC. The cover art is not terribly persuasive, and they make no mention of Jacki Weaver or Ione Skye. Weaver gets a mention on the back, but these are two names that should be put prominently on the cover. Why would you not play up having a two-time Oscar nominee in your film?
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Almost a slight taste of Amityville Horror 2:The possession.. feeling.. Like the atmosphere of the room, how it came across that something wasn't right...but the movie never continued and the intensity and foreboding evil essence..if they had focused on that angle and fuelled it by the attic that had a small door and behind that door was some hidden rooms , that held the center of the movie, instead the attic seemed fine and OK the sleep in but the little door became the focus of the storyline, and not even the little room was giving a history about it, and the what i would call The Spirit Phone used to call the 'other side' ...also gave us no history of meaning, Yhe movie failed in parts which unfortunately shrouded the film as vague and ungiving ..where if the writers gave us a bit more depth, on keeping the attic a room that made u feel uncomfortable ,,and the strange little door ..that behind was a small little room, with a dark cold place that gave us a sense of fear, as parts of its past and what went on in there, and was it that way only because of some strange box.. a telephone to the other side, and told us why it was made, invented for a specific purpose ,,and by whom,,..the box lacked,,a what should have shown a invention of an evil machine that attracts only bad things... The actors were all good, the basic storyline was fresh and could have become a movie compared to the Amityville 2 to even challenge it.. I gave it a 6/10 rating
Such a pity, this movie started with so much promise, then seemed to lose it's way and quite possibly money and time. Was building to quite an interesting spooky story, then WHAM!, out of nowhere it ends, with so many loose ends, so many questions, so many "eh!, but what about" questions. "why did that happen" moments. Quite honestly, you watch this and you feel, well, cheated!. Such a pity, there were a few, suspend your belief moments, but weren't too niggly. But ultimately, this movie was a mish mash of Coulda, woulda, shoulda moments it was just too hard to ignore or forgive. You watch this movie and you feel time was not on it's side. It's the shell of a movie that could have been.!!. ;(
I read about Haunt today in Fangoria Magazine and it really sounded
like a cut above many of the genre films. Well, I looked it up, got my
hands on a copy of it and sat down to see if it would give me some
chills and thrills. No such luck.
For a ghost story that's complete with a haunted house, box that allows the living to communicate with the dead, and a pretty decent looking spirit, this is a complete snoozer. If I thought the first half was tedious and dull, the second half didn't really improve on that much.
A family moves into a house that has a history of several other family members dying there. How did they die? Why did they die? Why are the hauntings starting up again? Those questions are lost as viewers ask questions like do the parents actually have jobs or are they independently wealthy? The parents don't mind when a girl who shows up and starts bunking with their teenage son?
Truly, it's agony pointing out the plot holes because there are a huge number of them. There's a tiny bit of tension here and there, some of which is ruined by those lovely jarring scare noises when something happens on screen. It's just a sign of director who doesn't trust what he's putting in front of us to do the trick.
Simply put, don't waste your time. Haunt is a snoozer.
Soon a hundred years of horror. And still, filmmakers in this genre mostly rely on easy scares accompanied by violins in sudden crescendo. "Haunt" is a typical manifest of those rules, nothing less, and certainly nothing more. Once every leap year or so, there is an original approach to the genre. But this is definitely not one of those. Formula- based, utterly predictable from the very beginning, stereotypical characters, generally uninspired... The halfway forgiving aspect was the technical part, hence the 3/10. But there is something seriously wrong with a movie for me when all that is left to bother with are the most clinical aspects of it. Why do any filmmaker feel the urge to tell a story told a billion times before in the exact same way? I watch a lot of horror because I always hope for a good one. But I am beginning to feel tired from looking for something shiny in this vast pile of poo. I guess they made some money from it, which seems impossible not to however flat out bad the end product is in this genre. It always seems to be a bunch of hardcore horror fan-boys and -girls whom madly love all these movies just because of the tags more than anything else.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
so i watched this movie expecting something good because of the reviews in my usual movie site and what i found was a slow paced, slightly confusing set of plot points that kinda came out of nowhere and really didn't get anywhere. for one thing the characters...a family of 5 in which at least two of the characters didn't really add anything to the movie. one of the characters, the younger sister, seemed to have an important role but in the end had nothing useful to add except for a creepy warning to her brother and girlfriend. the parents were extremely open minded considering they allowed the son to bring in a strange girl they've never meet to sleep with him on a nightly bases. the parents themselves were only there to explain that the son ...was in fact an 18 year old who had parents...and that's it, they could have made the son a young professional who meets a cute girl, eliminating the parents and sisters and would have achieved the same result. so as characters go, they wasted there importance to the point of uselessness. another plot point that made no sense was a magic radio box that could speak to ghost. that just kinda came out of nowhere and stayed with no apparent back story or at least an explanation of why it was there in the first place. the movie itself was slow paced with some good jump scares but really didn't get me excited at all...the ending was slightly anticlimactic and honestly boring. i'm a horror fan and to me this was one of those generic atmospheric horrors that just never built up to something special...to bad because they could have gone in so many great directions with this but instead wasted a lot of great opportunities to make this special.
The premise of the movie starts good, this is a little ghost story, all
the ingredients are there, the house, the tragedy and... the
communication device, in this case, a EVP Box from the sixties.
The 2 leads are well developed and although they don't display good acting skills, it is clear that they have chemistry together and that alone make up for all the script plot holes.
The rest of the cast flows in development of their roles through the movie but in the last act they suddenly disappear from screen for no other reason than to focus on the two leads, this results in a big miss because we suddenly stop seeing them and that empty space turns the whole concept upside down, degrading what was well done in the first acts.
The movie tries to tie the story together from pieces to puzzle to big picture with the revelation right at the ending.
Hopefully it works, for the majority of the movie, sadly, the ending is incredible anti climatic.
I can see the director trying a different thing pretending to be original but the result came out incredible wrong, not only ruins the movie, it doesn't explain in any meaningful way anything except a few loose ends..
In fact the final declarations sounds more like "yes we didn't knew what to do anymore so we finish the movie like this.. you like it?"
Well, NO, did I spent 2 hours of my life for this???, I've should had known better.
This is clearly goes into the director and writers fault. There are movies that get saved by the ending and left the viewers at least with a satisfactory conclusion, then there are movies that are dull through and through, but the worst of their kind are movies like this one, with an nice premise, good development and stupid ending, that is unforgivable because it gives you a weird feeling of bad taste on your mouth, a feeling of being cheated.
Do not waste your time, it's really not worth it as there are much better movies out there.
Haunt is a very competent horror film because of its sinister atmosphere, competent direction and an interesting screenplay with some innovative elements. My favorite one of those elements was the electronic synthesizer of ghost voices, a kind of steampunk E.V.P. radio which allows communication with the deceased ones... or with whatever presence is rounding the haunted house. There are other ingenious elements in the screenplay, but I prefer not to reveal them in order to avoid spoilers. What I can reveal is that Liana Liberato and Harrison Gilbertson bring solid performances and have a perfect chemistry with each other as the "odd couple" with different methods and motivations to solve the mystery. I found the romantic sub-plot between their characters a bit irrelevant, but the investigation they make adequately combines the tense search of evidences with paused reflections about the origin of the supernatural events. Speaking of which, Haunt makes a good use of practical effects in order to bring the ghosts and appearances to shape, obtaining some good shocks and moments of a delicious suspense. On the negative side, some edition tricks and sonorous accents feel a bit excessive. Nevertheless, I found Haunt a very entertaining horror film with an interesting mystery, good scares and credible characters who, at the difference of many films from this genre, generate empathy on the audience. Comparing Haunt with other "haunted house" films from the last 5 years, I would place it below Insidious or The Conjuring, but above Sinister or any of the Paranormal Activity sequels.
i gave this a 6 outta ten because the cinematography was good, the
ghost was actually pretty terrifying as movie spirits go, jacki weaver
was eerie and haunting in her role as the vengeful wife and grieving
mother, and the ending kinda surprised me. i jumped quite a few times,
and the scares weren't as predictable as other movies.
of course it wasn't on the same par as sixth sense, exorcist, insidious, or the shining ; the script was kind of bad, the teenage love story was gag-inducing, and there wasn't any character development to speak of, but all in all not a bad little ghost story at all. especially for netflix.
a bit clichéd but wholly entertaining would be my description.
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