The Campbell family has got a problem. Their son Matt is dying of cancer and the constant drives to the far-off hospital gnaw at their finances. So they decided to search a home in the distant to the hospital. They qick find a cheap home…but naturally there is a snag in it for that bargain. In the past there lived a mortician with the addiction to the black magic and the machinations mobilzed the ghosts who now terrorize the family with pleasance....
"Based on the true story" says the cover…and this is always a good way to make such a dismissive horror interesting for the masses. The script is based on the supposed incident of the year 1988 which should have occured in Southington, Conn., in either way. This was the case of the Snedekers, a very religious family who was infested by the ghosts right after the move-in. AMITYVILLE, I know what you’re after. That’s not surprising that the paranormal sleuths Ed & Lorrain Warren were invited who after their first inspection determined a „very bad infestation“ and recommended exorcism. Said, then done, called priest-bud Zaffis who carried out his duty saying "In Nomine Patri Et Filii Et Spiritu Sancti" – and all the ghosts were gone. You might ask why I’m so sarkastic. Well, the Warren couple becomes well known as investigators of the AMITYVILLE incident in 1975. And they also were involved in the Smurl case. In all cases the matter was “infested houses” and their exorcism And all incidents are factual not proved but all made into movies. The only thing proved is the point that the Warrens with their add-ons made much money. And in the case of Connecticut they released together with their author-friend Ray Garton (main category horror novels) the pimped up shocker "In a Dark Place: The Story of a True Haunting" Who is going to take this at face value, also believes on aliens in our midst, the faked landing on the moon and Area 51! The movie itself is a colorful conglomerate of haunted house movies & POLTERGEIST (cemetery beneath the lot, high-piled furnitures, flickering TV) which mutates into plagiarism in some places.But anyhow, director Peter Cornwell could build up a proper suspense because he stoicly leave the characters cut and dried and set the focus onto the surprises. And this is successful, the effects technically proficient and the sound effects create a creepy atmosphere. Virginia Madsen may present after THE ASTRONAUT FARMER again a strictly religious mother, actor Kyle Gallner in the role of Matt known as Bart „Impulse“ Allen from SMALLVILLE the only one able to show credible feelings on the screen. All other actors are staffage remaining pale and not into one’s memory.
Conclusion: Friends of tended suspense should risk a view. Gorehounds should spare their money.
Like it is supposed to the movie THE HAUNTING IN CONNECTICUT was released with a PG13 rating for the cinemas in the US. The movie makes real good money at the box-office and was only beaten by „Monsters vs. Aliens“ at the opening weekend. Worldwide it obtains about 65 Million Dollars what is a tremendous success for this flick. Nevertheless an unrated version has been released on DVD which at least costs the author of this report some nerves. 98% of the changes relate on different color schemas of individual takes - partly only frame-short - as well as alternative material. The supernatural appearances are mainly in monochrome but colored in the unrated version. Many things can only be recognized in single frame mode or while watching entirely close. It is not really a gain or an enhancement of the movie in any case in my subjective oppinion. In the US both versions have been released on single disc. While the theatrical version only features the main movie in wide and full screen with no extras, the unrated version instead comes along with lots of additional material. So there is also a digital copy of the theatrical version available, furthermore 5 different quite interesting documentations about infested houses and similars, deleted scenes and audio comments. For fans it is in any case the better choice!
In the unrated version there is already in the pre-title alternative frame material and additional scenes. In the rated PG version there are two monochrome shots which are colored in the unrated version. Then there is a surgery scene in the unrated where on the other hand in the PG the take of the photograph starts a little earlier so that there is no running time difference.
Wieder alternatives Material plus eine zusätzliche Szene in der Unrated. Und auch hier wird die Laufzeitdifferenz durch eine verlängerte harmlose Szene in der PG kaschiert.
There is again in the unrated version alternative material plus an additional take. And like before the running time difference is concealed by an extended harmless scene in the PG version.
PG monochrome, the unrated is colored
The same procedure: PG monochrome, the unrated is colored.
There is slightly different frame material and the PG as usual in monochrome.
Matt sees the two ghosts in the mirror. Ghostdaddy is carving signs into a body. Here again there is an alternative shot.
Once again alternative material among which there is a colored scene in the unrated version.
A different shot.
And once again....
Oh, now for a change we have some extensions in the unrated version.
( 4 sec. )
Only in the unrated version the eyelid is slowly cut of with the scissors whereas on the other hand only 4 single frames were inserted in the PG version.
( 6 sec. )
Matt together with the ghost corpses in the cellar. Again there is an alternative setting.
Again there are two different takes.
Use of a different color scheme.
Now there are lots of alternative settings whereas the unrated version is mostly colored. However the unrated features two additional ultrashort takes so that it finally runs a little longer.
( 3 sec. )
History lesson with the priest. Again an alternative shot of the coven.
Now a ghost appears to Mom too. This takes a little longer in the unrated someway alternative and colored besides.
( 1 sec. )
Matt is covered with the signs and stands screaming in the cellar. When his mother Sara joins him the unrated runs a little longer and again some alternative shots. And it’s only in the unrated where Matt says to his approaching mother: "He wanted to kill me!" Also only in the unrated version sara says: "Okay. I'm gonna call an ambulance!", while Matt pleading calls "Mom" behind her.
( 5 sec. )
Only in the unrated version there is a take where the paramedics take off the plaid from Matt’s chest in the ambulance.
( 2,5 sec. )
Now there is a close-up of Matt in the unrated whereas on the other hand the previously removed knee-shot is now inserted in the PG version. This is where the PG runs some single frames longer (approximately 14 frames).
When the reverend notices the ghost in the rear-view mirror the unrated is slightly brighter.
Once again clearer after the car has grint to a halt.
Reverend Popescu turns around and again the unrated is brighter.
When the demon opens his mouth the unrated is naturally brighter and more colorful.
The demon appears behind the roomate’s head. Here again both versions use a different color scheme.
Matt steps up to the demon and again there are different takes.
The same procedure.
I am running out of circumscriptions…hm, in fact already for a while...
So, now I’m totally fed up with. From now on I will summarize the changed insert cuts within the next 10 seconds. A run time difference doesn’t come about anyway. Every frame is an insert cut!
Flashback, solution. Only in the unrated version the eyelid is cut off in a close-up. This is only indicated in the PG version. The following shot of the eyelid hold in the hand has minimal color differences. And finally the demon grimace first is colored and second mirror-inverted.
Three more short flashbacks are varifying.
Back at the hospital and again an alternative shot of the gost’s face.
Alternative insert of a demon grimace.
Now there is just one frame of a hand different but only minimal…
The burned head can hardly be recognized in the pan-shot – but differently colored brightened.
Again the skull is color-modified.
Again there are differnt colors and two alternative settings.
A red puddle of blood in the unrated version.
Matt excavates the next dead bodies. Here the first take in the unrated ends earlier followed by an alternative close-up of the falling out dead body.
One shot of the demon grimaces not only colored, also better to recognize.
A frame shortened alternative insert.
After some frames the next difference.
Alternative color scheme.
Interesting, one take is absolutely identical in both versions however it flickers from blurred to sharp in the PG version. In the unrated it is always sharp.
Noch einmal die Variante Scharf/Unscharf in der PG.
Once agin the sharp/blurred version in the PG.
Sharp / blurred.
Sharp / blurred.