The Amityville Haunting (2011)

 Reviewed by R.T.K.

Currently drinking: beer!
Well my movie choice is limited this week. So I’m subjected to scrolling through Netflix titles. I come across an Amityville horror remake? I think that’s what I call it…well the Amityville horror, original and remake, were good movies, I thought. So the Amityville haunting should be good, right? Well it isn’t off to a good start. We begin with a little back story explaining the history of Amityville. Of course a warning about how this is all real! Which will defiantly convince me to believe everything I see for the following 86 minutes? Then we go directly to a group of teens taking film of the house. They shortly break in so they can, as the kids say, “get this party started”. Once inside we are met with obvious camera distortion all over and the breaking of the practically all my rules for horror. Staying in the house, splitting up, having sex, partying, they are doomed. While having sex, surprise surprise, one of our friends is killed. Next scene is a family pointlessly filming them looking at the house as prospective buyers. Being the smart home buyer he is, dad decides to agree on it immediately after stepping through the front door because of the “good feeling” he has about the place. We soon after discover, the whole family knows exactly what happened in the house….again refer to my 10 mistakes made in horror films. It is revealed that this is all they can possibly afford in a house and decide to take it. Lucky for us the son will film everything for no reason. Next we have film of the son walking out to the driveway (remember he’s the one holding the camera) to see the relator is dead on the driveway…a great indicator to buy the goddamn house, huh? By the way, the kid holding the camera is apparently completely indifferent to a dead woman lying on the ground and runs right over. Right after him the rest of the family sees her laid out and they react properly. He barks at the family to put the camera down and call 911. The next 7 minutes of the film are just the son walking around, filming noises coming from wall vents and chandeliers moving. He tells the movers (yeah, they are too poor to live anywhere else but they can hire movers, have you ever had movers? I haven’t! Fuck that) about the current state of the house: haunted. They laugh it off. During a segment where the son shares his intimate feeling with the camera, he sees (as in, he tells us its happening but we can’t see it) that his sisters bedroom door opens. He walks over to investigate just as the camera begins to malfunction. He doesn’t seem to notice the malfunction and doesn’t see the black figure blip on and off the screen. Well no matter, because as one of the movers walks down the stairs, screen turns black for one exact half of a millisecond, and when we return it is revealed that the mover has fallen down the stairs, with no visible neck injury, and bleeding out enough to leave a pool of blood next to his face that has formed fast enough and an open head wound, which closed up quickly enough, to make you say, “what the hell just happened”? Son calls out for dad. The camera changes to mom crying and her son with the camera all up in her face. Apparently for his documentary… after the death of the mover, everyone is shaken. No one seems to give a shit about the death of the relator. The death of a salesman…yeah, I went there. Super spy continues filming the rest of the house and his family. His family is apparently blind because even though they suck at acting and look directly at the camera, they don’t notice the son filming them. After another talking to with the camera. Son reveals…it’s the first damn day they have been there….and two people have died…..and he got all these paranormal noises on video, I the middle of his recap of one damn day in the house, his closet door opens! He gets up to check, camera distortion, door slams! Next morning parents are having conversation about how the front door opened by itself. Of course they blame the rebellious teenage daughter. How do you know she’s rebellious? She has rips in her jeans! The little daughter comes down to eat with detective brother right in tow. She pours two bowels of cereal, one for her one for her friend. Hmmmmm seems so familiar. The imaginary friends name? John Matthews, the little boy that was murdered by his father years before, what does he have planned? It’s a secret! Dad yells at family to find out who left the front door open. After not getting his answer, he feels bad for yelling and declares it has been a hard couple of days. Couple days of what? The title card said this was day two..and you hired movers. You haven’t done shit to be tired of! Yeesh. At any rate he declares that everyone should take the day off (from doing nothing) and have a family go out and see a movie day, with promises of ice cream at nine in the goddamn morning. Oh, by family go out and see a movie day, I meant women go out and see a movie day. That’s right, mom, younger daughter, and older daughter leave for the day while dad and son stay behind. Father and son decide to use the time while the women are away to install a security system. Son, on a quest for tools to install said security system, finds a random cell phone. While telling dad about it, he pleads dad looks at it, claiming it has a video on it…..he hasn’t even unlocked the screen….how could he possibly know that. Then when dad does look at it, the damn phone is dead….now it’s an iPod. Is it an iPhone or iPod!? So I’m going to throw this next part at you fast because it confused me too. Son charges phone, shows video that he has no idea exists to mom, mom watches a fraction of a second of the video, son claims its kids looking for a ghost in the house, mom puts phone down(pod) down and says no. ya see what I mean? If that’s the video form the beginning of the movie then two more seconds would have shown that paranormal murders took place in the house and the movie could end on a positive note. I.E. dad pulls head out of ass and moves to not haunted house. Not the case, because this mom, like every horror movie mom, refuses to believe there is anything wrong. Oh and all those security camera are filming around the house. HMMM WHERE HAVE I SEEN THIS BEFORE! Cameras catch back door flies open, alarm goes off, son wakes up excited……ok…. So he shows the footage of the back door flying open by itself and dad says it’s obviously someone breaking in that got scared off. He finally shows the I (phone/pod) video to the family, they don’t see the murder at the end. Family deals with small hauntings in the most ignorant way possible. That’s about how the meat of the story goes. Older daughter’s boyfriend gets caught sneaking in, on his way leaving, he gets dragged off somewhere. Another more than obvious sign that bad shit is going down. Keep in mind this only the 3rd day staying there! The fourth day they get told by a cop that blood is found around his property. The detective comes by asks if they knew the history. After they say “yes”, he then proceeds to tell them all the history of the house. In the middle of this speech, a comical spirit materializes and dissolves right on camera. Detective does a great job of damage control and asks why they would move here even though they know the history…wife starts crying. Dude, really? What a dick. Dad’s friend comes over to place new security system. Dad’s friend is then killed by a faulty wire that falls on his face. We are then graced with the cheesiest of all movie scenes, doesn’t matter what genre, every movie now and then a movie will have their very tacky and very terrible “NNNNOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!” son then goes downstairs with the intention of embarrassing his poor father and filming him while he’s crying about his dead friend, the whole time father is sobbing obvious phrases such as “I can’t fight what I can’t see”. Next day, dad begins trying to physically fight the little ghost boy little daughter has befriended. Holy Christ, imagine how cheesy and lame the paranormal activity movies would be if Micah began punching at the air furiously at nothing….family makes plan to leave, good idea! So dad buys a couple crucifixes and everyone thinks he’s gone crazy. Uhhhh if I knew for a fact there was a demon or ghost in my house, a crucifix would be the first thing I buy! Then dad decides to stay because he will not abandon this camp? So this guy’s shell shock has set in full motion, dad is no help. Mom’s advice? Everyone upstairs! Are you kidding me? Everyone in the car as we drive away! By the way, this is just the 4th day! “The following takes place between 3A.M, and 4A.M.” what significance does that have?! Well at any rate at least it means this movie will be wrapping up soon. Let’s list off the family members for fun!

1. Oldest daughter gets mangled and strewn about her room; you don’t get to see anything. Some bogus “corrupt video” message interrupts all the good stuff.

2. Wife gets dragged off after walking down stairs in a trance.

3. Son finds mom with no skin and gets jumped by some asshole in a trench coat

4. Little daughter gets spared by ghosts, again check my 1o mistakes made in horror

5. Dad gets killed by little daughter.

6. I kill myself for sitting through the whole film

Ok listen, Geoff Meed (the director), copying paranormal activity won’t make your movie good, putting blood in your bad guy’s hair and dubbing a scream in the lip synching won’t make him scary, and acting does matter. Do you think ‘The Breakfast Club’ (my favorite movie) would have been a good movie just cause of its writer? NO! the acting made it one of the greatest, great acting=great movie, bad acting=’The Amityville haunting’.
Ok, time for some meaningless effing ratings.

Acting: 1/5 the only reason I gave them a 1 is because they were on camera, rocks would have acted better

Music: N/A

Production: 2/5 I only gave them a 2 because their fake blood was red.

Scary: 0/5 the only reason I gave them a 0 is because going into the negatives would be childish, was not scary

Story: 1/5 over used 30 year old tale and not even a good re-telling

Overall: 1/5 watch only if you are drunk/high for laughs

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