The Amityville Haunting (2011)

   
Directed by: Geoff Meed

Starring:

Jason Williams .... Douglas Benson
Amy Van Horne .... Virginia Benson
Devin Clark .... Tyler Benson
Nadine Crocker .... Lori Benson
Gracie Largent .... Melanie Benson


Release Date: Direct-to-DVD: December 27, 2011
 
Rating:

 

Decades after the incident where Ronald DeFeo murdered his family as well as the Lutz family fleeing the place, a new family called the Benson's moves into the home and a preteen named Tyler (Devin Clark) uses his camcorder to videotape anything that goes on in the home in which strange things start to happen there as their door opens and shuts around 3:15 in the morning in which their father Doug (Jason Williams) questions his family on sneaking out at that time in which they deny.
They even spot their youngest child Melanie (Gracie Largent) talking to an imaginary friend only to dicover that it was a murdered child who lived into the house before them.
The family also experiences others who have had unexplained accidental deaths in the home which makes things more unwelcoming for them while staying there along with Douglas acting more aggressive with what is going on there.

 

The beginning looked fairly cheesy in which we spot a bunch of people videotaping in the home and later on we see them getting killed offscreen in which this looked quite phony and I had a feeling that this flick was going to be pretty cheesy.
Things seem interestingly cheesy even more so with the family moving in and the son of the family named Tyler is toying around with his video camera pointing it at him announcing what is happening as this looked fairly entertaining. We also spot someone helping move the stuff in whom has an attitude in which this offers some good humor with what Tyler says about him. Later on when the mover walks down the stairs is supposed to shock you that he somehow dies on the ground but this fails to freak you out like the picture was supposed to do.
There's even a situation when he goes and films in his older sister's bedroom and she's changing which offers more laughs here with her getting embarrassed and telling him off as well as talking to her Mom about this. Some of this seemed to work in naturally with the sibling rivarly type of appeal here.
Of course in the story we spot the youngest child Melanie talking to an imaginary friend which leaves you an impression that this is a demonic ghost like the character Jodie from the first flick. This all looked a little too cute and over the top though.

There's many moments with a surveillance type of camera spotting on what goes on at night in which things look rather creepy when we spot a door opening by itself. There's other situations like a teenage prankster coming in to the place as well as intense moments with the family man Douglas entering with his gun and getting hysterical with him making the story look effective. Also we spot this kid outside flipping the bird with both hands and then suddenly he seems to be attacked by a spirtiutal force which doesn't come off too well while we spot this.
However we spot some convincing and emotional moments with the two parents discussing on what is happening in the house which draws in well giving you a feeling that something here is not right at all in which was a good pointer in the scene with all that has happened so far.
Things were well set when Douglas gets stern with everyone at the kitchen table with his demanding attitude as to who was sneaking out at night and everyone denies in which you wonder or not if he will lose control alltogether while he does all of this. It's certainly an impression that the house is starting to make him act slowly but surely obnoxious.

There's more impressive moments with Melanie telling her Dad and Tyler about her imaginary friend who lived in there before them but yet some of this seemed a little too obvious.
There's even a moment with a detective questioning the parents about them being aware of what went on in the house over the years in which this was supposed to be a cringing feeling but yet this all seemed a little too set out. In other words the moment was supposed to be good and serious but it fails quite a bit.

However there's some situations that makes up in the plot as Tyler spots a strange man entering their home who doesn't really say anything until Douglas arrives whom acts extremely friendly. Also he seems mysterious when Tyler questions him as he sets up a camera. Later on things start to look shocking when this guy leaves outside and a power line shocks him to death which is a nice jumping moment when we spot this. This I had to say was quite well done.
However later on in the story things looked pretty good and intense when Douglas tries to find out who Maelnie's imaginary friend is and acts brutal about it swinging his hands at this invisible figure. Although this was supposed to look serious it seemed a bit goofy to watch.
There's a nice serious moment with the Mom telling her kids that they will be leaving the house in which was well done here since these filmmakers still tried to keep up with the creepiness of the Amityville home.
There's another moment with Douglas losing his sanity putting up crucifize's around the home in which this certainly seemed pretty dysfunctional looking but then later on he is acting like a soldier in front of his family as at first looked disturbing but this moment really gets carried away big time.
The near ending seemed to look well done when we discover some horrifying moments that deals with a ghost and some killings too as well as possessions too. All of this was fun to watch indeed.

Bottom line is this is categorised as a ripoff homeage to Paranormal Activity with some elements on the Blair Witch Project but yet there's the odd good spooky moments that works in the film so it isn't all that bad. Mind you this is an independent flick by the makers of Asylum Entertainment in which they have had a reputation for making shoestring budgeted horror and sci-fi flicks. There's not a shot on the whole house so we never spot it mostly due to a thin budget of showing the house we all knew on the other flicks. Plus the insides of the home doesn't resemble any of what we see from the other series either. Oh well they tried their best on what they did here.

The acting is in rough shape with certain people but only in some parts of the flick. Lead actor Jason Williams (Doug Benson) however seemed to pull off his part not too badly as someone whom at first has a good hearted and laid back type of personality. He shows off a nice charm to his part and was convincing as a family man in the flick. There's good situations when he acts firm as well as stern about stuff showing perfect no nonsense type of aggressions here. However at times he was a bit over the top when he loses his sanity in certain parts but picks it up so it doesn't show too much of this. He also does well crying when things get too much in which he draws this in perfectly. Plus does well with his violent actions too showing off a perfect intense energy here and there.
Amy Van Horne (Virginia Benson) however looked a little too young for her role as the family woman in the film. She was a little phony acting with her sobbing emotions ina certain scene of the film as she should've gotten some lessons in which she was a bit over the top here. However she seemed to do well sobbing in another situation when she is scared about something which was an improvement. She does well with her calm type of personality whenever she talks to someone on a situation drawing this in pretty well. Her acting skills were half good and half not so good.
Devin Clark (Tyler Benson) knew his part pretty well as a mischievious typical pre teen of the family here. He does well with his speaking whenever he hosts in front of his camcorder being prefectly clear in what he does. He also does a good job with his excited reactions when something is about to happen here. He shows off alot of great spunk into whatever he does in the flick.
Nadine Crocker (Lori Benson) wasn't seen a heck of alot in the flick but yet she does well playing a typical teenager with her snappy like aggressions as well as having a rebellious type of attitude too. She also shows off alot of great aggressive energy cussing out at her on screen father when strange things start to happen letting everything out in which she was pretty believeable at doing so here. She deserves good credit here.
Gracie Largent (Melanie Benson) really had a nice cute personality into her part in which she does well acting happy and lifelike all the time. However she was alittle too much whenever she does this especially when she talks to her imaginary friend and telling her family what was said as she should've beena bit more serious while doing this. She didn't seem to break her character at all and needed some coaching in order to act like this. Otherwise she seemed believeable from time to time as a happy little girl that you'd want in your life while raising.

A bloodied head on the ground is briefly revealed
A mangled bloodied face is lying on the ground
A slaughtered facelike ghoul appears

Not much here but we do hear some effective hissing and scraping sounds towards the near end of the flick with the paranormal terror unveiling even more here which was put together by David Raiklen.