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An American Haunting Reviews

Page 1 of 4
Cole Smithey
ColeSmithey.com

The frights are few and the moment of horrific revelation is a big letdown in writer/director Courtney Solomon's cinematic treatment of Brent Monahan's novel "The Bell Witch: An American Haunting."

Full Review Source: ColeSmithey.com | Original Score: C-

April 19, 2009
Anton Bitel
Eye for Film

it becomes haunted by the unwelcome presence of heavy-handedness, making it seem more like a busy domestic melodrama (with a ghost) than a truly unnerving chiller.

Full Review Source: Eye for Film

July 2, 2007

Takes the most documented ghost story in history and doesn't create one truly scary moment.

Full Review Source: UGO

March 24, 2007
Michael Szymanski
Hollywood.com

This is proof that it doesn't take lots of bloody gore, big special effects or jump-at-you moments to scare jaded audiences.

Full Review Source: Hollywood.com | Original Score: B+

August 23, 2006

Unoriginal and unrelenting, this gothic ghost story invests too much time in banging doors and billowing drapes and not enough in its characters.

Full Review Source: BBC | Original Score: 2/5

June 3, 2006
Jim Lane
Sacramento News & Review

Director Courtney Solomon's script is a catalogue of the standard Exorcist-style special effects, hammered home by Caine Davidson's musical score, one of the most irritating and nerve-wracking assemblies of noise in movie history.

Full Review Source: Sacramento News & Review | Original Score: 2/5

June 3, 2006
Marc Savlov
Austin Chronicle

It really is fun to watch yet another oddball turn by Sutherland, and a marginally restrained one from Spacek. It's just not that fun.

Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle | Original Score: 2/5

June 3, 2006
Matthew Turner
ViewLondon

Disappointing horror film which fails to generate any suspense or horror and is occasionally downright laughable.

Full Review Source: ViewLondon | Original Score: 2/5

June 3, 2006
James Kendrick
Q Network Film Desk

Although [director Solomon] has some great ideas, they are limited, and we are therefore treated to repeats of the same basic scenario over and over again until the effect becomes tedious.

Full Review Source: Q Network Film Desk | Original Score: 2.5/5

June 3, 2006
Nigel Floyd
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This allegedly true tale of demonic possession is weighed down by period detail and ponderous storytelling, which soon get the better of its Exorcist-inspired levitations, flying crucifixes and noisy poltergeist activity.

Full Review Source: Time Out

June 3, 2006
Joe Utichi
FilmFocus

A collection of cheap jump-scares and tacky clichéd imagery that we've seen a million times before.

Full Review Source: FilmFocus | Original Score: 2/5

June 3, 2006
Pam Grady
Reel.com

It's less An American Haunting than American humdrum.

| Original Score: 2/4

June 3, 2006
Eric Campos
Film Threat

Labeled by some as 'America's Greatest Ghost Story,' the legendary Bell Witch gets herself another movie and the result is far from America's Greatest Ghost Movie.

Full Review Source: Film Threat | Original Score: 1/5

June 3, 2006
Christine James
Boxoffice Magazine

An American Haunting utterly stultifies the thrilling Bell Witch legend on which the film is based; the most disturbing ghost here is the wraith of opportunity lost.

Full Review Source: Boxoffice Magazine | Original Score: 1.5/5

June 3, 2006
Jim Judy
Screen It!

The film isn't that frightening simply because we've seen this sort of 'girl attacked by demon' material countless times before.

Full Review Source: Screen It! | Original Score: 3/10

May 25, 2006
Daniel Eagan
Film Journal International

Writer-director Courtney Solomon manages to cast a modern spin on the story, but it is one that could be regarded as the least imaginative explanation possible.

Full Review Source: Film Journal International

May 24, 2006
Rich Cline
Shadows on the Wall

Writer-director Solomon simply can't generate any actual suspense. Although he certainly tries.

Full Review Source: Shadows on the Wall | Original Score: 1.5/5

May 18, 2006
Christopher Smith
Bangor Daily News (Maine)

More like "An American Hanging." It slips a big noose of banality around its audience's necks and then tightens the rope until unconsciousness sets in.

| Original Score: F

May 14, 2006
Cynthia Fuchs
Common Sense Media

The girl has a crush on her teacher and a flirty classmate (Sam Alexander). But eventually this plotting seems a distraction, or a means to blame the victim.

Full Review Source: Common Sense Media

May 13, 2006
Nathan Rabin
AV Club

It's never an encouraging sign when a horror movie based on a true story fatally lacks the verisimilitude of, say, Alone In The Dark.

Full Review Source: AV Club | Original Score: D

May 12, 2006
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