Hello to all those faithfully reading and hopefully enjoying this effort to make even the worst horror movie more watcha... aw, screw that - I'm not that good. If a movie makes you cringe because yet another batch of unlikable teens that are pushing 30 are inching toward their deaths, having a party no one does anywhere ever, a paranormal movie is boring you to tears with unending pans of empty rooms, or thanks to CGI technology when people finally bite it, their blood squirts everywhere except on the victim, the ground, the people next to them... you're in good company and this is the right place for you.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

REALITY IS BETTER THAN FICTION




The Haunting Of Whaley House (2012)

I have often kidded that I have a form that I use for bad horror films where I can just fill in the blanks and have my review done before half the movie is over. That would be my horror movie worksheet (patent pending). Hell, I could sell pads of those things in stationary stores. Because anyone could use them, they really could. Okay, let's try an exercise: You have a house with a reputation (doesn't matter what it is), people have heard about it existing... BAM! Based on true events! Now you can make up any shit you want and still have a freaking paranormal oogy boogy movie. See how easy that was?




The real Whaley house.
Especially if you're reviewing movies by The Asylum, which happens pretty regularly here because they are prolific in churning out movie after movie that one, rips off the ideas of more successful movies and/or 2, rips off its own movies and/or 3 is just paper thin obvious and so writing a review really could be done within 30 minutes of the movie - any of its movies. 

Oh, and glaring errors, don't forget that. Before the movie even really begins, three idiots decide at night to see if breaking a window would piss off the ghosts. It shows the three of them in front of a parked car - one throws a rock and, seeing the ghost, backs up. Only now there's no car. BUT on the positive side, he gets run over. Did you ever notice in these movies that they're always hit and runs?




Early Whaley family portrait.
One 'Haunting' movie from Asylum I reviewed was actually done in 3D - oh man, what a stinker. To warn you, that was A Haunting In Salem which came out in 2011 and I reviewed it on my blog 9/24/12. So take that movie, cheapen it down ('cause there's no 3D), again claim it's based on true events, use the same damn story with a different house (that really exists) and insult viewers and San Diego residents alike with this horrid piece of dreck that ANYONE could critique this movie within, oh, say about 10 minutes. I personally, and I'm not bragging just giving you a heads up on how bad this movie is, did not have to write word one to do this review. Honestly. And since the movie does not deserve a wiki page, I haven't cheated either.



FAKE
The truth: Whaley House was never and still is not considered an evil place. While of course rumors of ghostly activity (which is attached to most everything old that had someone die there) is present, it still is not a place of fear and in fact is a California Historical Landmark. The Whaley family while alive was generous enough to let parts of it be used for different reasons, such as a general store, a courthouse, and a theater.



Now the Whaleys were not without tragedy, no family of that age really was. And the only 'evil' if you can call it that was before they even bought the property. This particular place was used as the site of a gallows and a man named James "Yankee Jim" Robinson was hanged in 1852. That particular 'ghost' has been seen by several if you want to believe that sort of thing. But Thomas Whaley wanted a grand home for his family which included his two married daughters. 




Unfortunately, one of the daughter's husbands was a con artist, having married the girl only for money and when that was apparently received, disappeared and was never seen again. For the 1800's this was horrible and the girl, only 22, never recovered and did in fact commit suicide outside the house. 



There are several family members who died inside the house but nothing horrible - that was pretty common for the times. In other words, a decent, pretty normal family who served their community. While the film claims no paranormal investigation has ever been allowed, the SOHO organization of San Diego has a monthly offer to investigators for a special night tour, to see if they can find some of the supposed apparitions seen there.



Oh yeah, that's ALWAYS a good choice...
Now for the crap film (thank you once again Asylum). It keeps to some aspects of the Whaley house and its misfortunes, but portrays the place in a nasty light, making the house seem like a holding place for evil. So in typical haunted house style this is the basic story: A young smart girl (there's always one - oh wait a minute, this girl was DUMB, sorry, never mind) works as a new guide in the Whaley house and is learning of its history. 


video

The group of young people she hangs with (douches all of them) persuade her to let them in since hey, we need a bunch of idiots to slaughter so... she reluctantly agrees although she feels an 'affinity' to the house (do we see where this is going folks and if you don't you haven't been paying attention to my blog).


Her douche friends also invite some of THEIR douche friends so we have a nice group of douchebags to slaughter - including one adult, an English so-called psychic who is thrilled to be there because 'no one has ever let a paranormal investigator in the house' which as I've already stated is crap. 


Now as you've seen, the house itself is pretty normal looking so they had to go out to find a 'spooky' looking house with a big yard and lots of bushes - duh. The action starts right away as a girl who earlier was admitted to the hospital because she 'saw' ghosts comes walking back, hospital gown and all, finds an axe in the yard and proceeds to 'chop' her own throat out. Oh yes my children it's going to be. Just. That. Bad.



If you think you're about to be bored by the same old scenes of explaining equipment, the psychic getting 'vibes' that really aren't there, and the teenagers being disrespectful of the property never mind the supposed 'ghosts' - give yourself a cookie.


And the killings start as the 'evil' Whaley family show up and determine to clean house. All except for our original girl who seems to be left alone. The order and way these idiots die is really not important, the only reason they're interesting is because it means the movie is getting closer to the end. Finally, only the original girl is left alive. For a moment.


Our last scene is of her screaming out the window that she is still alive, even as they cart her body away. The woman training her blames herself because she knew this girl looked 'so much like' the young Whaley daughter who had committed suicide. Now this girl is stuck in the house forever although none of her friends are. Um, wait. Didn't the Whaley daughter kill herself OUTSIDE? Huh. Well, no matter 'cause here are the credits and another Asylum abortion is now over.