This was one that really got me excited. Terrific actors accompanied by genuinely scary moments with almost zero time to catch your breath before something else surprises you. Before I rip into this movie I have to state that the lovely and beautiful Rose Byrne did an amazing performance, as usual.
With so much going for this movie, what in the world is there to complain about...
1. Rose's husband can't take all of the strange incidents going on at the house, so he stays late at work every night, leaving his wife home alone with three children. I have to call bullshit on this one. If your wife tells you someone was in the baby's room and alarms are going off at the house, you are not going to leave her home alone with your kids. It's not going to happen. What kind of man is that? What kind of man doesn't worry about the safety of his family? He's not evil or anything, it's not like he's a bad guy in the movie and has reasons to be a douche bag. On top of that, he's a teacher. Obviously he enjoys being around kids enough to teach them, but we're supposed to believe he is the kind of guy to leave his family at home to sleep at the school? I don't buy it.
2. The first ghost we see is a pale, vampire-looking dude with a ponytail that screams like a pterodactyl, and almost killed any hope I had for the movie. Was this what I had to look forward to? A bunch of pale goth's making dinosaur noises? The scene is over almost as soon as it starts so it's easy to forget, but for me it was another red flag.
3. The second ghost appears to be a boy from the 1920's who enjoys rocking horses and giggling. I will admit that it would be odd to see a little kid running around the house, but he doesn't look scary, he doesn't act menacing. He's just an innocent kid running around the house. A lot of people forget about this scene as well, probably because it is immediately followed by Rose's mother-in-law describing her dream and giving us a first glimpse at the demon - which is a great scene.
4. We're about halfway into the movie now, and you can relax because the great horror scenes have already been covered. No more compliments from here on out. Doofus and Dingo are introduced in the next scene as the psychic's assistants and the comic relief for the movie. Why in the holy name of shit do we need comic relief in a horror movie? They bump into two ghosts with the same stop-motion characteristics of the ghosts in 'House on Haunted Hill', and call the psychic.
5. Ready? The psychic tells the family that Rose's husband used to be able to leave his body and fly around in the spirit world, visiting places all around the world, and now their son has the same ability. Rose's husband must now leave his body in search of his son, whom he stumbles upon, chained to the floor, in the den of the demon - who is listening to music. I'll give you a couple of minutes to process that. Ready for more? Time is limited for Rose's husband to return with their son to their respective bodies because ghosts are waiting nearby to possess the empty bodies. It's a race against time as ghosts inch closer and closer to possessing the bodies. Don't worry, their son returns to his body and is happier than ever... Rose's husband's body is possessed by an old woman in a dress who kills the psychic. The end. I think the ridiculousness speaks for itself.
In closing, something about this movie makes me want to call it a good movie after I've seen it. While watching it, however, I can't pick any certain thing that makes me feel that way. It might be the creepy music and "old-timey" feel of eveything. I'm not sure. Either way, it's worth seeing to appreciate the intense horror scenes, however few and far between they might be.
3 out of 4
Give it a watch. See what you think. This is one I don't mind watching over and over, constantly looking for little things I didn't notice before.
Cheers and goodnight.
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