I saw this on Saturday night, and during the first 20 minutes I thought for sure I'd found a new haunted house gem. My date's eyes were closed, I was jumpy, the crowd was silent, and then...
And then male lead's mother showed up
to validate the wife's claims, thereby negating any "Is she crazy?" questions about the wife.
From there, it went downhill, especially when the ghostbusters appeared and shifted the tone of the film from serious spookfest to ad-lib comedy hour at the Jokebox. The crowd didn't know what to do, and neither did we.
"What just happened," my date asked. "Are these guys in the same movie?"
Guess so. And then the psychic matriarch waltzed in and it all fell apart.
Astral projection: it's presented as if it leads to a Super Happy Fun Place, but it can lead to "The Further" if explored for too long. Well, where was all the fun stuff? All we see is Dark Mistyland filled with creeps. Why would any kid want to explore this?
The acting grew exceptionally hammy and the props were distracting - the gas masks? - to the point of crowd uproar. Our theater was laughing and howling at this point. When the father had his "moment" in his son's bedroom and, what, finally looked at the drawings hung up on the wall? Now that's attentive parenting!
Great parenting all around, in fact. When the lead's mother shows him
the pictures of his youth with a veiled monster behind him in EVERY SHOT, and she says she thought it was a camera malfunction... .
what, the son was completely unaware that his father's astral self had been abducted at the last minute while he was holding his son?
<insert stock horror ending here>
I don't understand why the film changed as much as it did, because it really had a good thing going. Too many characters showed up to
validate the wife's hysterics, and when that happens, the film better create a believable, threatening villain. It never did, unfortunately.