Where else are you going to find first ever reviews for the top upcoming horror films? In addition to our first ever review for Platinum Dunes’ The Amityville Horror remake, we’ve got another one to keep that one company! So far so good- between my review, the one on AICN and the one you’ll find inside, ‘Amityville’ is shaping up to be one hell of a fun flick. I’ve already been informed of a few major edits and I can safely say it’s an even tighter flick now. Read on for the new review and check out the remake, which stars Ryan Reynolds and Melissa George, on April 15th…
A Remake I Can Get Behind: A review of Amityville Horror
by Bob G. Smithe
Normally I do not go for the whole remake thing. Usually I find them to be pretty pointless and usually sub-par to the originals. However this one I actually liked better than the original. I still love the old one, there’s just something about it that just reminds me of being a kid. This one has a style all its own and for a flick produced by Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes it doesn’t look like a Michael Bay film. Anyway, this was a very well done remake, and honestly it’s more along the lines of the book than it is the movie.
So for those who don’t know, the film is about the Lutz family and their nice new home. Unfortunately for the Lutz’s this is one ****ed up house. The cast is very strong and put in some great performances. One thing that usually kills a horror movie for me is small children, but this time around the kids don’t get in the way and aren’t annoyingly cute, they look like real kids. Ryan Reynolds puts in a great performance as George Lutz, he has to go from nicest guy to unhinged psycho and back and he pulls it off well, I was worried that all I’d be able to think of would be Van Wilder but he did a damn fine job. Melissa George is good as Kathy Lutz but her part is pretty much the usual horror female role, lots of screaming then getting tough, the usual.
The thing I really liked about this film was that it didn’t pull punches, when George is being evil; he’s really being evil. There’s no shying away from stuff, which is refreshing in any horror movie. The scares in this one weren’t cheap by any means and were all very satisfying. The effects were very well done even in an unfinished state they worked very well. The gore, while not in your face, is effective especially in the opening sequence. There are some great designs on the ghosts, very creepy, although I could use a few more glimpses of some of the more malicious ones. That’s one thing about this movie that is kind of a downer; a lot of the ghosts are shown in, while effective, very quick glimpses. But one of the good things about the photography was that they didn’t use a lot of gimmicky shots pulled from other flicks, it felt very fresh and new. There’s nothing that annoys me more than when a movie just blatantly rips its shots right out of other movies, I noticed none of that in this film. The score fit very well, and enhanced the mood of the piece overall and the sound design was spot on, you won’t find a lot of nail on chalkboard stuff here, just a lot of creepy whispering and thumping, exactly what a haunted house should sound like.
So overall it’s a solid haunted house flick, I’m still sketchy about any remakes but this one didn’t make me feel dirty afterwards. I can’t really say exactly how true it is to the book, as I’ve not read it in years, but it’s a very large step closer than the original film and is good, violent, and creepy. I highly recommend checking this one out when it comes out especially if you’re a fan of good haunted house stories.