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Return to House on Haunted Hill

Return to House on Haunted Hill Ė no thanks

A house with a grotesque history standing alone on a hill on a dark night. No, this is not the introduction to Scary Movie 5 Ė but it could have been. You know the story will turn out bad for several of the characters you are introduced to in the first 10 minutes.
Before I go any further I have to admit that I didnít see the first House on Haunted Hill movie. In short itís about a n old hospital outside of Los Angeles which has been used for medical experiments by dr Vannacutt and the ghosts of the patients he abused and killed. In the first movie a millionaire promises a reward for they who stay over night and survive the night. And through the introduction to the movie facts in the beginning we get glimpses of how the hospital was "run" and get the hang of what we are going to get. Bloody and gruesome.

In this second film, "Return to .." we get the link to the first one when Sara Wolfe who survived the first movie dies. Her sister Ariel (Amanda Righetti) goes to Saraís apartment and find out she has been obsessed by the house and a myth about an evil god called Baphomet who haunts the house and causes all the evil which has been going on for years. There she meets professor Richard who is looking for a statue of the god which was owned by the evil dr Vannacutt and now hidden in the haunted house Ö And then we meet some obvious bad guys looking for a journal from Sara and the reason for her death. All these enter the house and the horror begins in the search for the statue Ė and a way out of the night mare.

The house locks itself down, ghosts appear everywhere and we know it will turn out bad when the bad guy says "Letís split up and search the house." Hasnít he learned anything from watching horror movies? Our crew has to fight the house, the ghost of the patients and the ghost of dr Vannacutt before the find the statue. At that time only a few of them still are walking around by themselves. One is kissed to death, one is ripped apart, one has his guts ripped out of him, one drowns, another has his brain removed and finally the evil spy on the team of heroes is smashed by a falling refrigerator (!).

The film tries to be both a horror movie, a ghost movie and a treasure hunt. The horror is the most obvious and the use of red colours and dark hallways contribute a great deal to the creepy feeling when watching the film. Add a greedy and lustful professor and beautiful women with large .. [you get my point] and tight tank tops Ė you get a hit! Perhaps this was the idea, but the story isnít good enough and the killings are so gruesome that I didnít even want any popcorn during the film. A tighter story and not so much blood would have done it for me.

Perhaps a movie for the hardcore fans of horror movies, but I have seen both better plots and been scared more by only suggestions. If there is a movement in the dark, there are never any misunderstandings or harmless things going on. Itís always the real stuff.

The most impressing are perhaps the actors Ė they werenít nearly as bad as I feared when I got the DVD cover in my hand. Several of them could perhaps be seen in proper movies in some years.

Final comments; not a joyful film to share with your girlfriend, more a movie to watch together with your buddies when you want to get scared and donít find ANY other films youíve heard something positive about.

Reviewed by Hiro

Movie facts
Title: Return to House on Haunted Hill
Director: Victor Garcia
With Amanda Righetti, Cerina Vincent, Tom Riley, Jeffrey Combs
Producing company: Warner Premiere

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