Horror Movie: The Haunting (PG-13; 1999; 113 min.)

With a superstar lineup like Liam Neeson, Owen Wilson, Catherine Zeta Jones and Lili Taylor, and a super creepy gothic style isolated castle as the setting, this could have/should have been a great movie. However, it was really just a great laugh.

When three sleep study subjects arrive at the deserted Hill House castle, one soon begins to hear strange noises and see ghostly images of children floating around. Turns out they’re really there for a study on fear, but when it is obvious the castle is truly haunted, the whole group must help the one of them (Lily Taylor as Eleanor) who seems to be going bonkers there (see, they can’t actually leave because the caretaker has locked them in for the night and no one from the nearby town will either hear them scream or come to help if they do hear them). So over an hour later, they are still being chased by the ghost of the castle’s owner (who killed many children there and won’t free their spirits), and they are pretending to be scared of the terrible special effects.

Ugh…this is torture to watch and try to follow. There are no scares here, just cheesy plotlines and silly graphics. You’ll want to watch this one only if you’re wanting to waste a couple hours and get a good laugh!

  • Top Scare: Eleanor’s creepy siblings
  • Heartbeats: 1 out of 5
  • Gore Factor: 1 out of 5
  • Suspense Factor: 1 out of 5
  • Recommended for: No one, but if you must, 13 and up

Next up: Halloween Director’s Cut


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