Monday, 25 May 2015

Poltergeist 2015 - Reviewed X 2!

Another Sunday morning trip to the cinema, This time to see the remake of Poltergeist or as I named it after Poltershite, Me and Gav both share our views below, 1st up is the thoughts of the Big Man......

Okay, so lets be fair any kind of follow up to Poltergeist was going to be a tough act to follow. Although directed by Tobe Hooper, who is a bit of a fair weather film director at the best of times IMO, it was Spielberg pulling most of the strings behind the camera on this 'go to' haunted house classic. Even the sequels paled in comparison to the original so a modern re-make was always going to be terrible right? Well yes, sadly. Even the clever marketing ploy to use the possessed clown toy as a draw in TV spots and posters hints at a film far better than this turned out to be. Nevertheless Jonnys cult films and special guest Blogger Mr Shelton couldn't resist a Sunday morning cozying up on the back row of the cinema. Roll tape...
    I always loved the opening to the original Poltergeist film. The gentle score and family friendly comedic first scenes slowly gave way too something much sinister. At the time you'd be forgiven for thinking that you were watching Spielberg's E.T given that both movies were shot in similar neighbourhoods. This time around that feeling is long gone as the film makers openly use America's debt crisis and unemployment problems as the platform for the Bowen family. Dad Eric (Sam Rockwell) has been out of work for some time after being laid off from his job and is down graded to an impoverished suburb full of foreclosed properties. I couldn't work out if the writers genuinely had a point to make or were just trying to create relatable circumstances for the viewer to identify with. In fairness most of the cast and script do a good job of humanising the characters, particularly the two youngest Dawsons. It slows the pace and to some it might get in the way of some decent scare time but certainly from my point of view I welcomed the good characterisation. The rest of the story plays out quite faithful such as the tv, tree and infamous clown scene but this time around lacks the panache. The '15' rating aside I feel much more could have been achieved particularly with the demonic toys, there simply isn't enough screen time and could have given this remake a much darker tone if used more effectively. Things get progressively worse after the spirits abduct young Maggie and the rest of the family fumble around and don't really take things that serious. Don't get me wrong it's no farce but any respect I had for the characters leading up to the second act was quickly dwindling away by the time the unimpressive CGI kicks in and firmly places Poltergeist 2015 in mediocre remake territory. The arrival of Jared Harris and his cod Irish accent does nothing but add to the misjudged atmosphere. At least he was having a good time... 
    Upon leaving the cinema Jonny and myself compared notes and both wondered why Sam Raimi pulled out of directing. The dark tone of his fairly recent Evil Dead re-hash would have suited Poltergeist better in much the same way that Drag me to hell was a success prior to that, which was also fifteen rated if I'm not mistaken. I can't help but feel that in the right hands Poltergeist would have turned out far more accomplished and i'm somewhat surprised that director Gil Kenan failed too deliver the goods considering his great work on the under appreciated animated 'Monster House' from 2006. The thought of what might have been far outweighs what is on offer which is an overly common sight in horror these days. My best advice is to hang onto those pennies for the upcoming Insidious 3 or the Gallows. If you absolutely have too see Poltergeist at the cinema please DO NOT waste your money on the utterly shit 3D transfer. It's the worst I have seen in ages and its only benefit is the distraction that the blurred mess creates over an already muddled movie...

The kids hand painting made a right mess of dad's new 42" Telly.

Jonny T here with thoughts on the remake of Poltergeist. Now I could Eff and Geoff till the cows come home on this one but I know some people like it so please remember it's only an opinion and my opinion was it was shockingly bad, Not only was it £11 plus £1 for your 3D glasses it was as Gav has mentioned possibly the worse 3D I have ever seen, Blurry, Dark and all round shitty. As for the remake itself that is pretty much the same, Obviously it was never going to be anywhere near as good as the original but as remakes go this is up there with the worse of them. The story plods along quite boring to be honest and an hour and a half near the end started feeling more like being stuck in a triple bill of Hobbit movie and not allowed out. The story is pretty much the same as it would be but with changes such as a Charlie Brooker lookalike dressed as The Exorcist who turns up to clean the house, He is in fact a reality ghost TV show star much to the delight of the older daughter who can't wait to tell her freinds, Hang on a minute? Your little sister has been sucked into a portal to hell and that's your reaction? I kid you not that happens. Now once little chubby faced dark haired squeeky voiced repeats swear words her parents says in a cheeky way girl get sucked into to poltergoose hell that's where the film basically just stops. Sam Rockwell who at one point shits worms out his mouth cries "I Just want my daughter back" But refuses as does the whole family to call the police nobody after that seems bothered in fact they all look as bored as the audience. All in all a terrible remake, Shoddy 3D CGI heavy and all round boring bollocks. If you have booked tickets I would advise getting a refund whilst you can. Best of all have a look on IMDB some people are saying that it's better than the original, But like I say that's just an opinion .Crackheads! 


  1. Nice One Gav, Nice One Jon T. :)

  2. One wonders... how many Robocops or Total Recalls or Manchurian Candidates etc etc have to bomb before studios get the message audiences really honestly do not want these movies?