Amityville: The Awakening is a Blumhouse production, and you would expect more from the film that it actually delivers but it isn't horrible.

Amityville: The Awakening synopsis says,

"A desperate single mother moves with her three children into the notorious, supposedly haunted, real-life Amityville house to try and use its dark powers to cure her comatose son. Things go horribly wrong."

The film stars Jennifer Jason Leigh, Bella Thorne, McKenna Grace, Cameron Monaghan, Jennifer Morrison and Kurtwood Smith. It's written and directed by Franck Khalfoun whose directorial resume includes Maniac, Wrong Turn at Tahoe and P2. (Who? Yea, I never heard of these films either.)

Apparently the family moves into 'the house,' and the kids are not aware of the mom's intentions or hopes and it takes some school friends of one of the daughters to start pointing the family in the right direction of exactly what this house is about.

What's interesting is that they move into the house, as we the viewers know it as, but then the high school kids start referencing the movies and books written about the house, which is an interesting a unique spin on how they handle the franchise.


First disclaimer or warning involves the premise that this film was supposed to have been released in 2015, but finally got released in late 2017 to Google Play... for free.

Yea. With that said...

The opening and middle acts are not that bad, if you like the standard comatose people whose eyes pop open, and doors and things moving on their own. But the attempted scary stuff seems to happen more in our victims heads than in any real tangible events. Plus, with Bella Thorne playing the high school daughter, this film took the prerequisite move by having the obligatory scantily clad scenes with the young teen daughter. (Since she is an ex-Disney star, she has snapped and taking a lot of daring risks out there, not knowing if she wants to be taken seriously or get the attention by using her looks. But to her credit, she has working, having 75 different kinds of projects under her acting belt.)


Blumhouse put together the Paranormal Activity films, Get Out (review), Split (review), Insidious and some other great projects, but this film does not feel like any of their other work, It's almost as if someone handed them money with the caveat of them having more creative control of the film than Blumhouse.

The film has an inconsistent balance of frights, from the creepy, slow moving doors that open - to people in the house having frightening hallucinations. But the third act takes it up a notch, or tries when the real demon steps up and starts to take its victims. But it's a thin veneer of what or how a demon might actually handle dealing with human victims. I mean, really, pick one... trap the family in the house with mystical tricks or use real weapons to do the work... but both?

I won't give up the ending in case you watch the film, but it's kind of not a bad ending, but by the time you get there, well, it might feel good in contrast to the rest of the film.


All in all, it was not a bad background TV filler to have on while you're doing something else, but I am GLAD I MISSED it if it came out in theaters. I was going to include the trailer but it gives away pretty much every potentially good, moving saving scene, so no, I'm not. If you want to check it out. It's like a 2.5 minute version of the film!

I think this review serves more as a warning then anything else, but if you have something you're doing and it's on, hang around and see what you think. Otherwise, you may be better served to dig up any of Blumhouse's other, superior productions.

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