I recently watched the Amityville horror on Netflix ON DEMAND! I had really low expectations going in to it and I'll have to say I'm very pleasantly surprised at what I got. The movie stars James Brolin and Louise Lane as a young couple recently married with 3 kids (Louise has 3 kids from a previous marriage) The youngest girl is of course really creepy, then there's two asshole sons. The only kid with any real role is the youngest daughter, I'm getting way ahead of myself here let me start over.
The movie starts with Josh Brolin's dad and Louise Lane being shown around the Amityville house by Scott Thompson in drag (seriously the real estate agent is a DEAD ringer for Scott Thompson in Kids in the hall when he dressed in drag, I kept looking at her and couldn't convince myself it wasn't him) after being told about the murders that took place there and the very very low price point they decide to buy the place, and honestly why not! For 80grand they got a boat house, a small cottage, and an enormous house the gateway to hell in the basement isn't that big of a deal at that point.
They move in and bring a preacher out to bless the place he gets sick, his car tries to kill him at one point, a little kid gets his hand slammed in a window when he's being an asshole, Josh Brolin's dad does a great job of looking concerned for the first 30 minutes and then sick for the last hour and a half. That's my basic synopsis I'm not going into to much detail because I wanted to talk about the legend behind the house more than the actual movie. A lot of crap was left out of the original movie like the fact that the Lutz's kinda seem like criminals, a friend of the author of the book mentioned how they made up the story in the kitchen of that house, the Lutz's were involved in several class action lawsuits for fraud, upon the release of the new movie George Lutz sued hollywood for defamation of character, they really do seem like people who would do anything for money. In the movie (and I haven't found any research to support that this part of the film is true) they mention problems with the IRS and other money troubles which would make the whole idea of them fabricating a story about a spooky old house a lot more believable(that and the fact that the story it's self is completely unbelievable) at it's heart it's pretty much the shining without Jack Nicholson, which I don't like, I actually feel Amityville is the better "horror" film had more intense moments and didn't have stanley kubrick around going "if I make this scene completely nonsensical people will think it's artsy and it'll become a classic" where was i going with this?
The most interesting part of the film is actually the part that they don't touch on at all and that's the Ronald Defeo Jr killings. The guy mudered his whole family then washed up went to work the next day like nothing happened, gave mutiple different accounts of how he did it, wrote a book later in life and claimed that originally he just wanted to kill his father had to kill his mother since they were sleeping side by side and his sister killed the other 3 kids so their wouldn't be any witnesses, when Ronald found out about this he killed her. which is supported by evidence, the police that investigated the murders said that they were carried out so fast that he had to have an accomplice, yet he confessed to doing them on his own. But all of the family was killed on their stomachs not a single one was awoken by the gunshots, and one of his sisters had gunpowder residue on her nightgown, suggesting she had fired shots, but since Ronald confessed it was never investigated further.
this is getting long and I'm trying to be quick because I have to work in a couple minutes but the movie is well worth a watch and the history of the house is a really interesting read as well. Most of it is complete shit and I'm certain of that, telling an audience "this is a true story" just makes it that much more frightening. But this movie symbolizes what I feel hollywood has lost in their horror films. You never see a ghost, you never have a clear antagonist, it's 5 people living in a house and being scared. A simple concept hard to pull off but when it works it works well, I actually want to watch the remake just to see what exactly was changed because I'd think it would be hard to make a movie like this today.
By the way, the house from this film is currently up for sale for 1.15million dollars. so much for getting a haunted house for a bargain price :(
I've started my last 3 articles with "I recently watched" need to change that up