Listen in as stars Ryan Reynolds and Melissa George talk about The Amityville Horror
Haunted House stories are always a popular sell in Hollywood. Probably the most admired and well received of these has been Tobe Hooper’s Poltergeist. It came in the wake of the original 1979 Amityville Horror, which was purportedly based on true events. Poltergeist took certain elements from that film and reworked them into a horrifying, lively entertainment. One that still remains at the tiptop of just about every Best of Horror list to this day. So, its little wonder that the new reworked, reimagined Amityville Horror film, still claiming to be based on a true story, owes more to Steven Spielberg than it does anything else. Much like Poltergeist, the house in this new version of the Amityville legend also sits atop an Indian burial ground. And the kids are exact doppelgangers for those seen in Hooper’s film.
But is it as good? Not by a long shot. What it is, though, is a vast improvement on the original movie of the same name. 1979’s Amityville Horror hasn’t really stood the test of time, not like its successors in the field. Looking at it today, the first foray into the Lutz family ordeal is bland, boring, slow, and not very frightening at all (though available as part of a new DVD box set from MGM). And the ending is anti-climatic to say the least.
Producer Michael Bay has attempted to rectify that with a funhouse thrill ride that never lets up. Parts of it are shot, by director Andrew Douglas, as if the Amityville House itself is on speed. Scenes clip along at a breakneck speed, shuffling and splitting the screen like a shotgun blast. Even though it bastardizes the original legend with improbable instances of shocking terror, it could never be called boring. Where Bay failed in giving us a better Texas Chainsaw Massacre, he has exceeded in giving us a gripping jaunt that far surpasses most other recent spirit-themed slasher flicks such as The Ring, White Noise, and The Grudge.
Straight up: Its rated R for a reason. No lie; this is one gruesome show. There are some great moments included in this package that horror fans aren’t going to want to miss. Even though it falters with an ending that takes everything over the top and then some, the first 2/3s of these on-screen chills get a huge bit of praise for being, at the very least, extremely watchable. This sh*t is actually scary. And plenty of people were literally jumping out of their seats when I saw it at an advanced screening.
One of the aspects that hold this haunted house story together, and gives it some validity, are the two performances at the center of the piece. While what Ryan Reynolds and Melissa George have brought to the screen should in no way be considered a true representation of the Lutz Family, their Hollywood-ized revisionist take on this real life couple is one of the more unique and engaging relationships ever seen in a horror film. A rare thing, we actually care about their characters.
I was recently invited to attend MGM’s Press Junket and was rewarded the opportunity to speak with both Ryan Reynolds and Melissa George about their roles in The Amityville Horror. Parts of this interview have already been published on our site, as well as other places on the web. Here, today, I’m bringing you the actual audio interviews so you can hear them for yourself…
...the dude that plays George Lutz in the new Amityville Horror.
...the hot chick that plays Kathy Lutz in the new Amityville Horror.
Dont't forget to also check out: The Amityville Horror