HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Helen Morgan Story, The
Golem, Der
Yentl
Finishing Line, The
Triple Threat
Mysterious Castle in the Carpathians, The
Driven
Planet of the Dinosaurs
Gwen
Big Breadwinner Hog
Thunder Road
Moby Dick
Frankenstein's Great Aunt Tillie
Mad Room, The
Phantom of the Megaplex
Night Sitter, The
Child's Play
Power, The
Midsommar
After Midnight
Dolemite is My Name
Varda by Agnes
Toy Story 4
Master Z: Ip Man Legacy
Man Who Never Was, The
Greener Grass
Scobie Malone
Gangster, the Cop, the Devil, The
Brightburn
Satanic Panic
Claudine
Harpoon
Great Northfield Minnesota Raid, The
Dark Phoenix
No Mercy
Arctic
Fate of Lee Khan, The
El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie
Ladyworld
Rocketman
   
 
Newest Articles
Sorry I Missed You: Les Demoiselles de Rochefort on Blu-ray
Silliest of the Silly: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 1 on Blu-ray
Protest Songs: Hair on Blu-ray
Peak 80s Schwarzenegger: The Running Man and Red Heat
Rock On: That'll Be the Day and Stardust on Blu-ray
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
70s Psycho-Thrillers! And Soon the Darkness and Fright on Blu-ray
Split: Stephen King and George A. Romero's The Dark Half on Blu-ray
Disney Post-Walt: Three Gamechangers
But Doctor, I Am Pagliacci: Tony Hancock's The Rebel and The Punch and Judy Man on Blu-ray
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood: Interview with Director Rene Perez
Shit-Eating Grim: Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom on Blu-ray
Stallone's 80s Action Alpha and Omega: Nighthawks and Lock Up
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
Marvel's Least Loved and Most Loved: Fantastic 4 vs Avengers: Endgame
Battle of the Skeksis: The Dark Crystal Now and Then
American Madness: Sam Fuller's Shock Corridor and The Naked Kiss on Blu-ray
Flight of the Navigator and the 80s Futurekids
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
Holiday from Hell: In Bruges on Blu-ray
The Comedy Stylings of Kurt Russell: Used Cars and Captain Ron
Robot Rocked: The Avengers Cybernauts Trilogy on Blu-ray
   
 
  Amityville Horror, The Likely StoreysBuy this film here.
Year: 2005
Director: Andrew Douglas
Stars: Ryan Reynolds, Melissa George, Jesse James, Jimmy Bennett, Chloë Grace Moretz, Rachel Nichols, Philip Baker Hall, Isabel Conner, Brendan Donaldson, Annabel Armour
Genre: Horror
Rating:  6 (from 2 votes)
Review: One night in November 1974, around quarter past three and in a house in Long Island, Ronald DeFeo (Brendan Donaldson) takes a shotgun and murders his family. After raising the alarm himself he is arrested and claims that he heard voices telling him to do it, but nevertheless is imprisoned for the crime. The next year, the now empty house has yet to be bought until a young married couple, George Lutz (Ryan Reynolds) and his wife Kathy (Melissa George) see it as the ideal place to bring up Kathy's children from her previous marriage. However, whatever demons lie in the building are restless and soon the Lutzes will be embroiled in a terrifying ordeal...

"Based on a true story" it says at the start if this film. Based on a true story. Is it wrong to add so much to a story that was factually dubious in the first place, because that's what they try to get away with here. The real George Lutz was not at all happy with the revised version of the events that caused him to vacate his new house back in the mid-seventies, and took legal action, but did he have a case? Scripted by Scott Kosar, there's so much stuff in here that wasn't in the original account that you may well wonder why they bothered to call it a remake at all.

Of course, the reason it's still called The Amityville Horror is that true story tag carries a lot of impact. It also excuses the film makers from hanging the scary events around a narrative, indeed this movie is virtually plotless, throwing up one damn thing after another. The aspects of the original film, which was no masterpiece if you'll remember, that gave it resonance, such as the religious angle or the plunging of the family into financial peril, are largely dismissed in favour of a relentless succession of shocks and elaborate displays of special effects, all with diminishing power.

Although set in the seventies, little attempt has been made to conjure up the feel of the period - this could all be contemporary 2005, which it was in this instance. When the Lutzes move in, we already know that the three children haven't entirely accepted George as their new father, and this relationship will grow increasingly strained as the film wears on. But any suspense that might arise from there possibly being a haunting is swiftly dissipated when a host of apparitions make their presence felt, with daughter Chelsea (star of the future Chloë Grace Moretz) making friends with the ghost of one of the dead DeFeo daughters (no sign of any phantom pigs this time, however).

You get the impression that even though the film opens with a massacre, the film makers were just itching to kill one of the characters off yet are frustrated by the "based on fact" underpinnings. They do make sure the dog is axed to death by a hallucinating George, but that's about as far as they can go - needless to say, that never happened to the Lutzes' pooch. It's Reynolds who is mainly the focus of the haunting, as he is attacked in the bath, chops logs incessantly and generally lets the oppression of the house get to him, but any psychology of his condition is shallow amongst the flashy presentation. In the end, any fear you might have felt will be replaced by the rolling of eyes while the over the top events mount up, as if strenuous sensationalism is the only step up for yet another seventies remake. Music by Steve Jablonsky.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4889 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
  Rachel Franke
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: