Your House Killed my Dog!
I am a very strange person. When a coworker of mine by the name of Ashley told me about this movie, she had nothing positive to say about it. And, even though she didn’t actually request the movie, her words did nothing but inspire me to watch it. I had gotten to thinking that, with the end of the year coming, I would be doing another list of the movies that came out this year, naming 3 best and 3 worst. But the problem was that I hadn’t really seen that much crap this year. I certainly wouldn’t see crap in theaters, and I generally would just forget about it when it came to DVD. This was a good opportunity to add to the bottom 3. Still, I went into the movie with an open mind. So let’s see how The Apparition did, written and directed by Todd Lincoln, and starring Ashley Greene, Sebastian Stan, Tom Felton, Julianna Guill, Luke Pasqualino, and Suzanne Ford.
Four college students – Patrick (Tom Felton), Lydia (Julianna Guill), Greg (Luke Pasqualino), and Ben (Sebastian Stan) – attempt to recreate a parapsychological experiment known as the Charles Experiment, where six people stared at a picture of a dead dude until a table moved. With the use of some bullshit technology that amplifies their concentration 400 times over, something attacks the four students, pulling Lydia into a wall. Nowadays, Kelly (Ashley Greene) moves in with Ben to an empty neighborhood to watch her mom’s house. Gradually, strange events start to infect their new house.
Ashley did not do this movie justice. It was balls ass terrible. It mostly made no sense, showed zero originality, and was boring as all get out. I feel like good ghost movies need a motivation for the ghost. Or at least some kind of story to the ghost. This ghost has next to no reason to attack these people and is just some random dead thing that decides to start fucking with people. Sure, Ben participated in some experiment years before where random ghostie killed somebody, but why does it decide to come back now and start fucking with Kelly who had nothing to do with the original incident beyond dating the guy that was filming it? I think it may have been trying to kill Ben out of jealousy because he had filmed something because I think the ghost was an aspiring filmmaker who died before his time. Why else would a ghost drag a security camera along the floor to look at Kelly while she slept? And what the fuck is the deal with the mold stuff that indicated the ghost was doing something? Is this movie positing that ghosts have some relation to spores, mold, and fungi? Either way, somebody should’ve called Egon Spengler. And how the fuck is your big idea to defeat the ghost to get together and play the video or your séance backwards? The only thing you can do by playing stuff backwards is find inarguable proof that Paul McCartney was dead!
One of the few things I enjoyed about this movie was the look. It was always a pleasure to look at, but not for much more than the quality of the camera and that it was lit well. And that little unexplained creepy dead girl looked pretty cool. Granted, it was stolen from The Ring, but it still looked good. Though it was never explained and didn’t make sense to me, the moldy stuff always looked good. Granted, it was stolen from Dark Water… And those hands coming out from behind Kelly and covering her mouth at the end were cool looking. Granted, that was stolen from The Grudge… The thing with the sheets also looked interesting. Granted, the look of that was stolen from Nightmare on Elm Street… I’m beginning to see a pattern… Also, are sheets in hotels known for being made of rubber, and for being completely airtight? Otherwise Kelly should have been able to breathe through her sheets and was overreacting to having the ghost tuck her in snuggly. I got annoyed by how they handled their one failed scare attempt in the beginning of the movie because the moment that should have been the scariest in it was a split second, barely visible shot of a girl getting pulled into the air. I could tell she was pulled into the air by something, but not even whether or not she survived. It wasn’t until way later that we find that out. Their musical choices got on my nerves a lot in the movie too, mainly because they kept trying to sway the mood into spooky with musical scores when the movie itself wasn’t supporting that. Take, for instance, when Ben is trying to clean some strange burn thing off of the counter in the house. That doesn’t deserve spooky music! Sure, we find out later that the burn stuff is related to the ghosts (though we never find out how), but at the time you’re trying to convince us that a really stubborn stain on a countertop is frightening. They do the same thing later with random shots of the house and furniture. You can only do that if something scary has just happened or is going to happen! Granted, all of your attempts at scares failed, but you weren’t even trying then! They also had a part where a dog apparently died because it saw something in a corner. You do realize that it just looked to us like a dog was staring at a wall until it got as bored as the audience and decided to take a nap, right? You must have because you felt the need to just tell us later that the dog died because you weren’t able to show it to us.
The performances themselves in this movie were fine enough, but the characters all pissed me off. Ashley Greene was the other thing I liked about this movie. She didn’t blow my mind with her performance, but she sure is pretty to look at, and she walked around in her undies a pretty good amount. Her shower scene pissed me off because it was a total cock tease. Nothing happened to her while she was in the shower. If you weren’t going to have something happen to her, or at least have the decency to show her naked, then there was no reason for it in the first place. Also, this chick would piss me off. Early in the movie, she proclaims that she would like to “buy a saguaro.” Then she gets all condescending when Ben doesn’t know what it is. I know that a saguaro is a type of cactus, but I still would’ve slapped her in the face for not just saying “cactus.” She further pissed me off when she had to get all angry at Ben for no reason that I could discern. Are you mad because he participated in a parapsychological experiment in college? He wasn’t mad when you participated in a homosexual experiment in college! (Every girl does it, as far as my imagination is concerned) Are you mad because he used to date the dead girl in the picture? Because I got a good look at you and I doubt he was your first boyfriend. Were you mad because he didn’t tell you that he might know what was causing the stuff around the house? Because the ghost is fueled by people paying attention to it, so telling you would be counter-productive. And why the fuck would you kick him out because of it? So that you could be nice and alone with the ghost that’s trying to kill you? And why the fuck would you try to nail the door closed on a ghost?!?! Why is it that every horror movie is the first time the characters in the movie have heard anything about their predicament monster? It’s a ghost, honey! Have you never seen a movie? They walk through walls, whether you nailed the door closed or not. You know what kind of people are hindered by nailed doors? Living ones! Oh, you found that out already… Worst of all, it does not make sense that Ashley Greene could beat a dude at Street Fighter. Her fine ass doesn’t play video games! Or at least you better let me keep believing that lest I need to kidnap her and keep her in my basement. As for the rest of the cast: Sebastian Stan looks like a young Mark Hamill and Tom Felton is Draco Malfoy. That is all.
The Apparition fulfilled my expectations completely. Those expectations were admittedly low, but that’s a quote they can put on their DVD cover. They might not want to use the rest of this though. It was dumb, it was completely devoid of scares and originality, and the performances were nothing to write home about. But the movie was watchable, and probably worth watching just to make fun of it. Of course, I can’t imagine anyone thinking of jokes that I didn’t already use, so instead you can read this and skip the movie. The Apparition gets “It’s like a virus. It knows you’re afraid” out of “Ghosts only exist because you believe in them.”
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