The film starts with a group of teenagers breaking into the Amityville house (which is currently un-occupied) to see if they can spot the ghosts of the DeFeo family (If you don’t know the story behind the true murders that happened in the house or the scandal created by the Lutz family and Jay Anson I would highly recommend reading THE AMITYVILLE HORROR by Jay Anson and watching either the original or the remake of the film). In a quick couple of minutes they are all killed which leads to a few days later when we meet the Benson Family. The Benson family are looking to buy the house, despite its gruesome history, and we are taken on a tour of the house in the eyes of a camera held by young Tyler Benson (Devin Clark). Right of the bat we find the estate agent dead in the driveway after they finish looking around which makes you think MAYBE this could be an interesting film. The film progresses along as Tyler films his own little documentary about the house where we see images in the camera etc then other things happen people die etc etc which all leads up to the climax at the end.
There are a fair few things wrong with this film as a whole. I will be polite and say the end of the film was okay in comparison the a lot of hand held horror films out there but I found THE AMITYVILLE HAUNTING was trying to be as good as PARANORMAL ACTIVITY only to fall at the first hurdle. Now for the reasons why the film seriously pissed me off. For starters the house is nothing like the original house! Where is the boathouse? Which is shown in, not only the original film, but is ACTUALLY part of the house (I am being a total true crime and supernatural geek and looking at the original house diagrams in the Jay Anson book). Also this house is next to a lake not in a suburban area where THE AMITYVILLE HAUNTING is based. There are other little bits of the film which just didn’t sit right with me as a whole and as a follower of the house and the story behind it I was left feeling cheated, and I haven’t even got to the awful acting.
As a horror fan who loves his films to stick to the facts, or at least hold true to the original films, THE AMITYVILLE HAUNTING was a major let down. The only thing that connects this to the original series of books and films if the names of the Lutz’s and the DeFeo’s, I would suggest giving this a miss unless you have no clue about the events in the house or the original films.
Release date: 18th June 2012
Amazon Price: (DVD) £10.00