REVIEW: THE AMITYVILLE EXORCISM

CAST

Marie DeLorenzo  (Empire of The Apes)
Jeff Kirkendall  (Sharkenstein)
James Carolus (Jurassic Prey)
Austin Dragovich (Land Shark)

amityvillelegacy2A contractor who worked on the original ‘Amityville Horror’ home repurposed lumber from that renovation for other projects.  The carpenter ended up possessed and murdered his family.  Now it’s up to a priest whose brother died exorcising the infamous Amityville house to save another family whose home reused the cursed wood.amityvillelegacy1Amityville Exorcism was made on a shoestring budget and clearly is not the work of professional filmmakers. That’s totally fine and there’s some good stuff out there, but this was a damn hard sit through. Almost every scene is filled with bad slow motion sequences, distorted images flashing by and screeching, overly noisy sound effects. I guess that’s supposed to create jump scares or some kind of atmosphere but fails horribly. There’s not a lick of tension in this. Having the evil entity standing around in broad daylight, wearing a cheap red monk costume and a shiny red plastic mask unsurprisingly isn’t exactly terrifying

REVIEW: THE AMITYVILLE TERROR

CAST

Nicole Tompkins (Opening Night)
Kaiwi Lyman-Mersereau (Minutes to Midnight)
Kim Nielsen (Eascape From The Zoo)
Amanda Barton (Dracula’s Curse)
Trevor Stines (A Tragic Love Stpry)
Christy St. John (I Ship it)
Tonya Kay (The Other Wife)

amityvillelegacy3When a new family moves to an old house in Amityville, they are tormented and tortured by an evil spirit living in the home while trapped by the malicious townspeople who want to keep them there.amityvillelegacy1The Amityville Terror seems hell bent from the start to check of every box on the cliché’ horror movie list. That being said, it did manage to check them off in good fashion. For the most part it’s well acted. The story, while checking its boxes, does a good job of ramping up the tension as the story progresses. As the answers and the truth of what is happening unfolds it does manage to depart from its predictable ways, a bit, and there is a rather nice payoff in the end.


REVIEW: THE AMITYVILLE LEGACY

CAST

Schuylar Craig  (Camp Blood 4)
Julia Farrell (Endor)
Jennii Caroline (Die Sister, Die)
Jason Bracht  (Meathook Massacre II)
Jade Michael LaFont (Torment)
Cheyenne King  (Hate)

amityvillelegacy1Amityville Legacy pays incredible homage to the older Amityville films. In particular It’s About Time, A New Generation, and Dollhouse, which were all released in the early to mid-nineties. This film definitely has the same feel as those films, but with a bit more spunk. Like those films Legacy doesn’t take place in the Amityville house, however, we do get to see the Amityville house in the opening scene. The opening scene is fantastic, we get to see a retelling of the DeFeo shooting. Even though it’s only 2 minutes I feel that it’s crucial to the film and it’s very atmospheric. Incredible exterior shots of the Amityville house and I really like the red tinted lighting used in the interior scene because it flows smoothly into the opening credit sequence.
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The legacy’s story focuses on the Janssen family 4 girls and 1 boy. Mark is turning 50 and his kids have come home to visit him. His daughter Julia gives him an antique toy monkey because he had one as a child. However, this toy monkey is the same one the little girl in the Defoe house had under her bed when hiding from her brother before he killed her in the opening sequence. Somehow that evil transferred to the antique toy monkey. Once Mark receives his birthday gift he starts having blackouts and seeing his father who is now pushing him to kill has family.
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Not a lot of gore in this film, but there really wasn’t any need for it. Most of the murders happened at the end of the film. However the build-up is just right and really delivers in the end. All that character development and story before the final massacre really made you care for what was happening to the characters in the end.  Interesting enough, this story takes place around Christmas time and in the final scene it starts to snow. I really liked that touch of snow in that final scene.
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The final shot in the film really stays with you. It’s very intriguing because you don’t really know what happened since it cuts to the credits. I feel like the film left me wanting more, but I was satisfied with what I got. In the end, I really feel that less is more and Legacy really delivered just the right combination to make it one of the best Amityville films.

REVIEW: AMITYVILLE: VANISHING POINT

 

CAST

Selena Mars (Price Check)
Amanda Flowers (Wakers)
Mickala McFarlane  (DarkPrism)
Lloyd Kaufman (The Last Apartment)

_mg_8849The Amityville legend lives on when a resident of a local boarding house dies under mysterious circumstances. Her two best friends, Brigitta and Bermuda, Bermuda’s sister Sentinel, and the owner of the boarding house, Ms. Ernie, are absolutely devastated. This is not helped by the arrival of an eccentric and crude detective who never takes off his cowboy outfit, Hank Denton. Tensions run high as the girls begin to suspect their friend Margaret may still be alive; and as the detective’s behavior becomes more out of control, the house itself may very well be turning on it’s residents
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Being Dylan Greenberg’s first film it showed just how not to make a movie, the film has a tired caste, drags on in spots, no scares and the scenes leading up to Margret’s death are told through in no particular order making it very confusing. At this point the possession angle has been rubbed thin without offering anything we haven’t seen before. It tries to be a deep psychological horror, but instead comes off as phony and without any real conviction. The house again looks nothing like the original even though it seems it was always looked refurbished.145458_5409_feat-770x433
The only praise worth giving is the spooky soundtrack which felt wasted on a cheap money grab. Only worth watching if your a fan of Amityville and need to see all the films.

REVIEW: AMITYVILLE: DOLLHOUSE

CAST

Robin Thomas (Pacific Rim)
Starr Andreeff  (Dance of The Damned)
Allen Cutler (The Division)
Rachel Duncan  (What Women Want)
Jarrett Lennon (She’s All That)
Franc Ross (Deadwood)
Lisa Robin Kelly (That 70s Show)

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Newlyweds Bill and Claire Martin move their new family into a new house constructed by Bill himself. Shortly after moving in Bill finds a doll house (Modeled after 112 Ocean Avenue) in the shed. He brings it in the house and puts it in the garage. Later that night the doll house comes to life and makes the fireplace turn on. Bill wakes up at night as it is extremely hot. He goes downstairs and shuts the fireplace off. He then goes into the garage to fix the AC without noticing the dollhouse is all lit up. He goes back inside the house to find the fireplace on again and this time it won’t shut off. Bill sits on the couch and has a dream of his daughter Jessica in the fireplace, who asks for help. Claire wakes him up. The next day a flame bursts out of the stove, and Bill discovers that the bike he bought Jessica for her birthday has been run over by his truck. Claire spots the doll house and suggests giving Jessica that instead. For the party Bill’s sister Marla and her husband Tobias arrive. Jessica likes the pretty dollhouse. Examining it in front of the guests, she discovers a chest, filled with handmade dolls. Tobias and his wife exchange worried glances and obviously recognize the dolls as something dangerous.Every night the dollhouse causes problems in the house. When the mouse of Claire’s son Jimmy (Bill’s stepson) escapes from the boy and gets into the dollhouse, Bill’s daughter watches it, and as she mentions that the mouse is in her room, an enormous white mouse appears under her bed. When Claire and Bill try to make love in their bedroom, Claire notices the picture of Bill’s elder son, Todd, on the chest and feels like making love with the boy instead of her husband. Days pass and her feelings for the boy get worse, whereas she cannot understand what is going on. Bill is having nightmares with voodoo-dolls, demons and his family being killed. From his conversation with Marla we learn that at the age of 10 he also had similar nightmares about the fire in the house of his parents. That time nobody believed him and when the fire happened, his parents died. He is worried and annoyed with these dreams. Jessica understands that the dollhouse has something to do with the troubles. She starts writing down “the rules” having to do with the house, like “The house can hear me”. Jimmy is visited by his long-dead father. The zombie-father insists that Bill wants no good for Jimmy and that Jimmy should kill him.

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Marla brings some herbals for Jessica, as Jessica is somehow affected by the dollhouse and is not well, and sneaks one of the voodoo-dolls from the chest in the dollhouse. Todd takes his girlfriend Dana to the shed near their house. There Dana discovers a newspaper clipping, which explains that Bill has built a house on top of one that burnt down, leaving the fireplace and the chimney as they were. As the teenagers are going to make love, a strange fly comes from the ceiling and bites Dana, and she leaves in hysterics. As Todd tries to kill the fly, he bumps his head on the table and the fly gets into his ear. Luckily, Dana brings Bill just in time to save Todd and get the fly out. The next day, Bill and Claire go out, and Todd is left to babysit Jimmy and Jessica. He sends them to bed and invites Dana over for drinks. While Todd is mixing cocktails in the kitchen, Dana observes the fireplace as bizarre markings appear on her arm. As if in gruesome reply to Jessica’s earlier taunt, the dollhouse strikes out again, this time causing Dana’s head to burst into flames. Todd is finally able to hear her agonized hysterics over the noise of the blender and rushes to save her, putting out the flames. But he is too late: hideous, disfiguring burns cover Dana’s scalp and much of her face. Critically injured, she is taken to the hospital. Anguished and furious, Todd blames his father for the freak accident, as it was believed to be a faulty coil in the gas line. Later that night, Todd arrives back from the hospital and informs Claire that Dana has entered a coma as a result of her grievous injuries (it is implied she will not survive the night). Meanwhile, Marla and Tobias are making some kind of witch-craft, using the doll she took from the dollhouse. During the session, the voodoo-doll sits up inside the pentagram (or something else on the table) and makes objects fly around, explode and hit Marla and Tobias. Marla gets hit with a bookcase, and Tobias manages to pierce the doll with his knife. To his surprise, a large fly is extracted from the body of the doll. He rushes to help Marla out from under the bookcase, and as she is freed, she tells him to get to the Martins’ immediately.u5urutrutrutru

Jimmy is once again visited by his father. He understands that it must be something evil and wants nothing to do with it, though the zombie insists that they should kill Bill. Bill enters the room, spots the zombie and forces the boy out of his room. Then he takes a fight with the zombie. Claire sees a bruise on Jimmy’s face and thinks Bill must have done it, and not listening to his excuses, shuts the door in Bill’s face, leaving him outside. Her zombie-husband appears then, ties her and Jimmy and makes them sit in front of the fireplace, listening to fairy tales. Bill tries to get to the house through the garage, but the car starts by itself and the rolling gate of the garage closes. Bill, poisoned by the exhaust fumes, falls on the floor. At this time, Tobias arrives and frees Bill from the garage. They get into the house together, Bill starts to fight with the zombie, and Tobias brings the voodoo-doll of the zombie with him. Jimmy manages to throw it into the fire and the zombie burns and disappears. Todd is visited by the ghost or the zombie of his girlfriend Dana, who should be in the hospital. The zombie tries to kill him, but Claire rescues him. Bill tries to escape the house with his family, but Jessica is gone. Tobias finds her notes with the rules about the dollhouse, which say: “My hand disappears in the fireplace”. The men understand that the fireplace is a gateway to somewhere else. Bill goes first and Tobias follows. They get to the dollhouse, where Jessica is sitting on the floor, surrounded with bloody shells of voodoo-dolls. Monstrous demons, which Bill saw in his nightmares, have gotten out of the dolls and are about to attack the girl and her company. Tobias casts some kind of a protective spell, which allows Bill and Jessica to escape through a door. They get out, but Tobias is dragged by the demons and obviously killed.

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Bill destroys the dollhouse by tossing it into the fireplace. They drive away as the house explodes. Bill tells Claire they will build another house but Claire says “let’s just rent next time!” Jimmy tells Todd that his father is a great man but the house was definitely not up to code and the thought of Bill being a contractor really scares him. Todd agrees. They drive away as the house continues to burn.

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Granted it is a campy, low-budget horror flick, but Amityville Dollhouse still finds a way to entertain you, despite the cheap effects and minimal scares that it provides.

REVIEW: AMITYVILLE: A NEW GENERATION

 

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CAST

Ross Partridge (Stranger Things)
Julia Nickson  (China Cry)
Lala Sloatman  (Pump Up The Volume)
David Naughton  (An American Werewolf In London)
Barbara Howard  (Friday Teh 13th – Part 4)
Jack Orend (Casino)
Richard Roundtree (Shaft)
Terry O’ Quinn (Lost)
Lin Shaye (Insidious)

image-w856Struggling artist Keyes Terry, (Ross Partridge) wife Llanie, (Lala Sloatman) and friend Suki, (Julia Nickson-Soul) try to make it with an art show, and manage to take a mystical mirror home. The rest of their friends, Dick, (David Naughton) and Janet Cutler, (Barbara Howard) think it’s a useless purchase until a series of accidents plague them and their friends. As the strange occurrences begin to mount, Keyes begins to suspect that the mirror might be responsible. Doing a little digging into it’s past, he discovers a startling secret that puts him and his loved ones in grave danger.untitledThere’s a couple of pretty decent things about this one. First of all, the different gags done with the mirror itself are pretty good. The way that it is able to show a special image and is able to trick the participant in the mirror to kill themselves to look exactly that way is a nice trick to see. The kills are pretty cleverly done and do manage to get some shock out of them. The opening kill with the glass looks creepy, and is the best overall kill. The loft killing is the most suspenseful, as the fallen portraits, creepy in their own right, are brought in with a maze that is brought in to play is a nice addition. The final half hour is it’s best part, with some nice action scenes and a little bit of suspense thrown in as well.

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There’s still a couple of major things wrong with this one. The fact that there’s hardly any action at all in the film is a big factor. The only thing that happens is the kills, which are pretty much it. The rest is useless running around without much of anything done, and it’s hardly anything interesting that happens during that time. It just makes for a boring experience. The second is that it really has nothing at all to do with the story of the first film and has no real connection at all. That only a small number of references are made and that nothing even takes place in the fabled house makes it weird how the connection is made. These are the main problems, as the major bore-ness hammers it home more than anything.u5urutrutrutru
It does have enough moments to really give fans of the series a couple of rather interesting scenes. Take a shot on it, there’s worse films out there than this one.

 

REVIEW: AMITYVILLE 1992: IT’S ABOUT TIME

CAST

Stephen Macht (Graveyard Shift)
Shawn Weatherly  (Baywatch)
Megan Ward  (Dark Skies)
Jonathan Penner  (Coneheads)
Nita Talbot (Puppet Master II)
Dick Miller (Gremlins)

bountykiller01Jacob Sterling brings home a mysterious clock from the infamous Amityville house, not knowing that it’s haunted by demonic spirits. zkq6yucmcaahnufnopsb9r27cthAfter the special effects heavy ‘3-D,’ the hokiness of ‘The Evil Escapes,’ and the barely related ‘The Amityville Curse,’ the haunted house series that started in 1979 either needed a permanent rest or a shot of life in the arm. In 1992 Republic Pictures released the sixth installment straight to video and after the blandness that was the previous installment I don’t imagine it was met with much enthusiasm. And lets be honest, the world really didn’t need another ‘Amityville’ sequel did it? But to the surprise of some viewers this sequel was actually not too bad. In fact it’s actually rather good; more than it has any right to be.145458_5409_feat-770x433It has some of the best writing in the series. Strong performances from everyone involved. A really nice score from Daniel Licht, who kind of made a career out scoring direct-to-video sequels in the 90s. Moves at a fine pace. Some creative and graphic death scenes. Excellent work on the special and make-up effects. A couple really intense and scary sequences. Predictable is not a word I would use when describing this film. Cool twist ending. Though not a bad directing job it’s nothing spectacular, especially compared to Tony Randel’s work on ‘Hellbound: Hellraiser II.’ The finale is exciting, but also maybe a bit too over-the-top. Lacks the feeling of dread and sharp scares of the first two.1473859680893Final thoughts: I’d always enjoyed the first four films in this series, but never thought that highly of them. I also never expected this sequel to be as good as it is. Nowadays the majority of sequels that go straight to the video store shelf aren’t watchable and a complete waste of time and money, but ‘Amityville 1992’ is one of those rare examples of one done right.