Poltergeist (2015) : A 60 second review

“It’s not like it’s built on an ancient Indian burial ground or anything…”

Oh yes, another day, another pointless remake of a classic movie. It seems the last few years has been strewn with terrifying rumours about beloved films of every genre being torn a new one.  On rare occasions this turns out well. But is this the case with Gil Kenan’s version of Tobe Hooper’s 1982 classic horror movie? In a word, no.

What I liked…

I’m putting my rose tinted spectacles down now, deep breath, I can do this…

To its credit it gets on with the horror early on to keep you on your toes and there is a certain levity that feels almost lovable in its own terrible way.

The casting isn’t too bad. Jared Harris as  Carrigan Burke is cheesy but entertaining and helps you make it through the last half of the movie. Rockwell delivers his lines well, I guess.

The director clearly has some talent in the visuals, but is hindered by a frustrating impatience when it matters. The latter scenes in the “other side” are quite cool, albeit an unnecessary edition.

What I didn’t like…

Felt less a like a homage and more like a bad school play of a classic horror film.  Lazy and emotionless, two traits that will kill a film that is all about the family.

The movie stumbles hastily out of the blocks, with the scary tree, the clown and both catchphrases “this house is clean” and “they’re here” all making an appearance within the first twenty minutes!

Really needed to take its time a bit more and let things develop, instead of the clear saturation of incidents that would have most families out the door within 48 hours.

Verdict: Way too much, way too early. It’s simply a mockery of the original and would have been better off embracing its fast paced, quirky style and coming up with its own ideas. Like Prometheus, it suffers from an over-abundance of franchise-based ideas without really seeing any of them through. The best thing the film does is remind you how brilliant the original was. 4/10


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