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Amityville Dollhouse (1996)

Amityville: Dollhouse (original title)
A children's doll house, which is a miniature of the infamous haunted Long Island house, is given to a young girl where the demonic evil soon comes out to cause more terror.

Director:

Steve White
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Robin Thomas ... Bill Martin
Starr Andreeff Starr Andreeff ... Claire Martin (as Starr Adreeff)
Allen Cutler ... Todd Martin
Rachel Duncan Rachel Duncan ... Jessica Martin
Jarrett Lennon Jarrett Lennon ... Jimmy Martin
Clayton Murray Clayton Murray ... Jimmy's Father
Franc Ross ... Tobias
Lenore Kasdorf ... Aunt Marla
Lisa Robin Kelly ... Dana
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Storyline

A dollhouse that is a replica of the infamous Amityville haunted house is given to a little girl. Soon after, all sorts of horrible unexplained accidents start to happen. The family must work together to fight off the terrifying evil that has inhabited their lives. Written by Bren L. M.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Home is where the Horror is... See more »

Genres:

Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for horror violence, sexuality, and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 February 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Amityville Dollhouse See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Clarita, California, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

On the original poster art, and the UK cover art, the scene is more from Amityville: The Evil Escapes (1989). You can tell because the lamp from the fourth movie is in front of the girl on the floor, and it's clear that she's in the attic from the fourth movie. Also, the girl in the poster is not Rachel Duncan (Jessica), but instead Brandy Gold from the fourth movie. See more »

Goofs

(at around 31 mins) When Bill is talking with Jimmy after the incident with the rat, the tip of the boom mic is visible. See more »

Connections

References The Brady Bunch (1969) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Average Entry Rounds Out The 'Original' Series
14 April 2010 | by MuldwychSee all my reviews

The Amityville Horror: in the real world, it's about a young man brutally murdering his family one night on a drug-fuelled rampage. In the world of film and fantasy, it's about demons in the cellar, possession, evil lamps, sinister clocks and unnecessary 3D. The film franchise has had a long life and some of the installments have been - and let's be kind here - god-awful. 'Dollhouse' was the very final installment before someone turned back the clock with the 2005 reboot, and having watched every single Amityville thus far made, I can honestly say it's not the worst. No, for that, we have to go back to 1992 for the pain and misery that is 'The Amityville Possession'.

Many of the sequels would spin a yarn from an artifact removed from the Long Island house that would then raise hell in a new setting. In 'Dollhouse', the house itself is an artifact in miniature. When the Martins, a dysfunctional Brady-style family (two single parents and their kids coming together as one unit) move into their new home, conflicts are down-to-earth and domestic until Martin Snr finds an old dollhouse in the shed that just happens to be the spitting image of the infamous residence in Long Island. As soon as the replica is brought into the house, things begin to go pear-shaped. Household appliances take on a life of their own, people start having bad dreams, and Jimmy, the youngest son, begins to see the rotting animated corpse of his dead birth father. Will everyone realise the cause of the disturbances in time, or will they all succumb to the evil designs of the dollhouse?

Amityville VIII, unlike its predecessors, makes no attempt to tie its plot in with the source material. No references are made to the DeFeo murders, demonic possession, or even the house itself. The only connection is the obvious visual link with the Dutch-colonial dollhouse, whose origins are never explored. It's as if the producers are saying 'Look, it's straight-to-video, you know the story, no-one will be watching who doesn't.' However, putting aside the very obvious question regarding where the dollhouse came from and what connection - if any - it has to the actual Amityville house, the story follows the familiar structure of its predecessors: characters possessed by demonic forces, unexplainable local phenomena and even killer insects. Also present is that same sense of deja vu, wherein you once again know you're watching a generic horror film with the word 'Amityville' stamped on it. To expect a lot at this stage however, after even the recycled ideas have been recycled, would be asking too much. This latest retreading still manages to be entertaining and not without its moments, and the actors present give convincing enough performances with the material handed to them. Compared with other entries in the series,the horror elements here are lower in tone, and the death scenes few and far between. There are a few dodgy monster moments, which while tied into the plot, aren't realised with the kind of budget that would do them justice, and the prosthetics only just about work. Overall however, the story follows its own internal logic well enough not to cause irritation and so long as you don't try to integrate it into the Amityville universe, it's an entertaining enough 90 minutes.

I have to say that watching every Amityville in the series has been torturously painful at times, sometimes making me wonder why I'm a sucker for B-grade horror. However, there have been some notable entries as well, with 1992's 'It's About Time' probably the most imaginative. 'Dollhouse' is a less ambitious rehashing of the formula, but it stands above the real clankers, enough to not leave a bitter aftertaste.


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