Written by / 5/21/2015 / 1 Comment / , , , , , ,

THURSDAY NIGHT REMAKE REVIEW OF 'POLTERGEIST'

2015 rating: **
Well there was a theme park ride based on Steven Spielberg’s JAWS, so why not POLTERGEIST? You sit inside a tram connected to winding tracks, rolling through a riveting haunted house. Yet what separates this from any other frantic horror movie of the last decade is an evil clown doll… numerous clowns, actually… and a cute little girl sucked inside the television set. Hi Def... sans the Star Spangled Banner sign-off.

Wherein the original had three complete acts, each a fulfilling story in itself, the new POLTERGEIST cuts right to the chase – and it’s only a chase this time around. The family consists of mellow patriarch Sam Rockwell, seeming more like a cool uncle than a responsible adult dad with his wife, two curious kids and one bitter teen… just like before. But this suburban clan act like they just met, lacking the ingrown chemistry before the haunting occurs and hardly earning the post-traumatic, devil-may-care attitude after the research staff, led by Jane Adams, moves in to investigate the paranormal emergency.

Like the unnecessary CLOSE ENCOUNTERS Special Edition brought us quickly inside the spaceship, this reboot takes us deeper into the ghoulish depths of the house built on a relocated cemetery. A nice attempt to learn the ingredients of all the bedlam, but without any explanation there’s no purpose to go that one step beyond, even when the usually-effective Jared Harris (reunited with his HAPPINESS lover, Adams)… a cross between the original Tangina and Robert Shaw’s tough JAWS shark hunter… arrives to clean house, literally.

Not that there isn’t a fair amount of suspenseful jolts. It just wasn’t necessary to remake a cinematic experience that took its time to put the characters, and the audience, through an immense ringer. At a sparse 93-minutes, these people hardly suffer at all. The main clown serves as a cameo. And not long after "They're Here," they're gone.
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1 comment:

  1. ah HAPPINESS, one of my favorite movies of all time, also one of the funniest movies of all-time. I had no intention of seeing this re-make but another great review nonetheless.

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