The Haunting rates average

Posted by The Skyliner on April 15th, 2009

Steven Adam Renkovish
Guest Columnist 

Haunting In Connecticut

I did not expect much going in to this film. The reviews on Rotten Tomatoes certainly were not among the best of the year, so I went in to this film with moderate expectations. Let’s just say that I was mildly impressed.  

The film begins with a mother and her son, riding around Connecticut, and looking for a new home. The son has cancer which requires several treatments, and his mother wants the family to move closer to the hospital. She purchases the first house that is available. From the moment we see this place, we know that it is probably not the best idea. However she makes an executive decision, and does not even think to scope it out beforehand.  

Almost immediately, the son starts having disturbing visions and nightmares. He moves into the lower half of the house, because it’s spacious, and he thinks it looks cool. Big mistake. This is where the movie actually starts and things get intense. The use of atmosphere is probably the finest element in the film. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for the acting or the direction. The herky-jerky style of editing gets annoying after a while, and at times the film seems unfocused. There were a few scenes that made little or no sense at all within the context of the story. The acting was mild, to say the least. Virginia Madsen (Sideways) portrays the mother, and she is the only one who manages to show the least bit of range. 

Also, the film is very derivative of other haunted house films, and anyone who has seen The Others, The Shining, or The Amityville Horror will know exactly what I am talking about.  

The film manages to pack in quite a few scares, and since I scare easily, it got to me. There were even a few subtle spiritual messages scattered throughout, and I thought that this was a nice touch. I only wish that it could have been a bit more original. Overall, I feel it deserved a C+ on the movie grading scale. 

The Haunting in Connecticut is rated PG-13 for some intense sequences of terror and disturbing images.

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