Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Return to the House on Haunted Hill

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!

Return to the House on Haunted Hill - 2 out of 5

Alright, I'm going to make this one short and sweet because this film is the epitome of a sequel that didn't need to get made so I don't want to give it too much attention.

Starting off, in 1959 a little film was released on the world called House on Haunted Hill and it starred Vincent Price as an eccentric money man who dares 5 people to spend one night in a haunted house. The film was clever and while it wasn't outright scary, it was creepy and offered the viewer a choice at the end: Even with the knowledge you have, was the house haunted or not? Then, in 1999, the film was remade with the incredibly talented Geoffrey Rush taking over for Price. What was delivered was--and you won't hear me say this often--a pretty decent remake. The film wasn't as ambiguous in the way the first one ended but what it gave us was a genuinely creepy and very uniquely crafted piece of work. It should have ended at that but in 2007, a direct-to-DVD sequel of the remake was produced called Return to the House on Haunted Hill.

The only thing I can really say about this film is that it just plain didn't need to be made. While the acting is decent and, for the most part, it keeps the creepy feel of the remake, the story isn't good enough to warrant its existence. The story of the original and the remake were unique but this film just dives into silliness as it sees people going into Hill House after a priceless idol (isn't there an archeologist professor that does that?) and this idol is the "heart" of the house. I'm not kidding, that's the story.

The High Definition release of this film (remember HD-DVDs? Blu-Ray beat them in that competition) offers a "Choose Your Own Adventure" style of viewing this movie that might make it worth seeing but sadly, I only got to see the regular version on old fashion DVD. However, the story was so lame that I won't even bother searching out a Blu-Ray version in order to take advantage of that feature.

While there is some aspects that work in this movie, the story is so weak that all it does is proves that not all films need a sequel.

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