A Haunted House (2013)
A Short Bad Movie Studios Review
So pretty much everyone in the world doesn’t like this movie. They pretty much say that it’s a series of tired and childish gags that string themselves together in the hopes that it would recapture a little bit of the humor of Scary Movie (2000). Well, if you care to know, “they” are metacritic and Rotten Tomatoes, and I did not at all dislike this movie. To be frank, I enjoyed this movie very much. It’s not at all high class entertainment, and yeah it does really attempt to retread the same ground Scary Movie did almost 15 years ago, but I actually don’t find that as a bad thing. This movie reminded me a lot of that Wayan’s brother powered spoof, and although I’m a sucker for good originality, I can’t help but to admit the guilty pleasure that I got from A Haunted House. I laughed at most of its 86 minute run time even though the entirety of the comedy is really low brow humor, the same kind you would find on an episode of Family Guy…or Scary Movie. Okay, so if you’ve read this far into the review, you’d probably know that this movie is a lot like Scary Movie. In fact, it was written by and stars Marlon Wayans, known as “Shorty” in the Scary Movie franchise. Really, there’s not all that much I could say about this film. I enjoyed this movie more than I thought, it kept me entertained all the way through, even with the comedy’s poor maturity level. It does also feel like standard fair of Wayans family written work. But I can’t help but notice how much of the Paranormal Activity series is in this movie. It really hits a lot of the memorable moments from the franchise it parody’s. And that’s something else to mention, Marlon Wayans said in an interview that this movie was “less a parody and more of a group of characters going through these paranormal experiences that also just happen to be doing the complete opposite thing that anyone with common sense would do in the situation”. That, is a real load of nonsense. This movie is a parody through and through. Period. But again, I never found that a bad thing. Something else I feel I should mention is that a lot of this movie feels like what Paranormal Activity (2007) should have been. By that I mean it doesn’t take nearly as long to set up the events that will unfold during the rest of the film. Also, it keeps the pace up with enough things to keep the idea relevant. Paranormal Activity seemed to have had one too many scenes of nothing happening but doors slowly creaking to the side or blankets moving. That stuff helps institute an atmosphere, and aren’t bad to start off with, but it just seems like it kept them around as methods to build tension for way too long. A Haunted House, although a horror comedy, gets going right away for the most part and keeps it that way. Now I understand that there’s of course going to be a large difference in pacing because of the genre differences, but I can’t help but feel that the source material that movie takes off from could have benefited from some of the elements that A Haunted House brought to the table. I think the Paranormal Activity series got a little better over the subsequent sequels, and that there was a bit more “Activity” as the films went on, but A Haunted House takes more from the original film in the franchise than it does from the other ones, so It feels more organic to me to make comparisons to that film instead. So, all in all, I liked this movie. The comedy was fairly fast paced and although it was hardly original, it was still entertaining. It’s not nearly the best horror comedy that I’ve ever seen, but it’s by far not the worst. I would recommend Tucker and Dale vs Evil (2009), I Know What You Did Last Friday the 13th (2001), and of course, the Scary Movie series if you think you’d be interested in this movie. Hell, I think the Paranormal Activity series would probably be a decent watch too.
Overall Rating: 82
- Interview: Marlon Wayans has fun building A Haunted House (shockya.com)
- Scary stupid take two with A Haunted House 2 @AHHMOVIE #AHH2 (scrink.com)
- FW: Movie you should see (jdarias95.wordpress.com)