The Amityville Horror (2005) – REVIEW

by Jordache Wee

Release Date: April 14, 2005
Directed by: Andrew Douglas
Music by: Steve Jablonsky
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Melissa George, Jesse James, Jimmy Bennett, Chloë Moretz, Rachel Nichols, Philip Baker Hall, Isabel Conner, Brendan Donaldson, Kara Rubeo 

On November 13, 1974, Ronald DeFeo, Jr. (Brendan Donaldson) shot and killed his family at their home at 112 Ocean Avenue in Amityville, New York. He killed five members of his family in their beds, but his youngest sister, Jodie (Isabel Conner), had been killed in her bedroom closet. He claimed that he was persuaded to kill them by the voices he heard in the house.

George (Ryan Reynolds) and Kathy Lutz (Melissa George)

George (Ryan Reynolds) and Kathy Lutz (Melissa George) and her three children from a previous marriage move into what they believe will be their dream home in Amityville. When George questions the asking price, which is well below market value, the realtor confesses the house was the scene of a brutal murder.  George bought it immediately despite hesitating to reconsider the purchase.

Soon, the family is plagued by a series of unexplained paranormal activities. Refrigerator magnets rearrange themselves to spell out the message KATCH EM, KILL EM.

Chelsea (Chloë Moretz) befriends a young girl named Jodie, the same name of one of the slaughtered DeFeo children. Chelsea also inexplicably acquires Jodie’s teddy bear, with whom Jodie was buried.

George frequently complains of the cold and starts spending large amounts of time in the basement, where he hears garbled voices coming from the furnace, an old television, and an unplugged clock radio reading 3:15, the time the DeFeos were killed.

The locked boathouse door repeatedly is found open, blood seeps from the walls, and the family dog incessantly barks at things only he can see.

Babysitter Lisa (Rachel Nichols) is trapped in a bedroom closet that has a door with no lock yet will not open, and hysterically insists she saw Jodie inside when she is finally released.

Father Callaway (Phillip Baker Hall) comes to bless the house, but is driven away when his holy water sizzles as it hits the walls and he is attacked by a swarm of flies. He later tells Kathy the battered stuffed animal Chelsea has belonged to Jodie DeFeo and was buried with her.

George’s behavior becomes increasingly bizarre, and he begins to mistreat and taunt the stepchildren he once clearly adored. As the paranormal events escalate, Kathy decides to research the history of her home in the library’s public records.

There she discovers it once belonged to a mysterious cult preacher named Father Katchem (thus explaining the KATCHEM AND KILL EM message), who tortured and killed Native Americans in the basement.

While investigating she finds numerous bodies in the walls of the house. Kathy is convinced the man’s evil spirit has possessed her husband, and she races home to remove her children from the house and take them to safety.

Meanwhile, George has broken through the basement wall and discovered a secret chamber, where he has visions of Father Katchem and his numerous victims. Apparently possessed and no longer able to control his impulses, George chases his family with a shotgun.

In a desperate struggle, George screams for Kathy to kill him, but Kathy manages to knock him out and with the help of the children binds his hands and feet and carries him to the boathouse, from which they make their escape by water. George regains consciousness and urges Kathy to get them as far away from the house as possible.

Jodie is seen standing in the front doorway and started screaming and crying. The clocks throughout the house reset themselves to 3:15, misplaced objects go back to where they were and the girl is pulled through the hallway floor by an unknown force.

Reviewer’s Note:
Amityville Horror was based on a true story following the events of the DeFeo’s family when Ronnie DeFeo murdered his family and claiming the voices from the house orders him to do so and he has no power over it to stop the killings. Therefore, charged as a psychotic killer.

Soon, the Lutz family moves in and experience similar events and believing that the house is evil due to DeFeo’s murders and several other unknown history that has already occurs in that house.

This film is not as expected like the previous film. After all, it’s just a remake of the 1979 film. Don’t expect much from this film!

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