An American Haunting Reviews
I mean, the director spends a couple hours trying to make us feel like the events are playing out in the year 1810, and then at the end we find out that the entire "haunting" was caused by, you guessed it, Pa having some serious "boundary issues" with his pretty young daughter. Could I be the only one who found this all more than slightly incongruous.
The film is supposedly based on the historical reports of the Bell Witch incident. If you read about the actual event there were no reports or even sugestions that whatever happened had anything to do with any kind of abuse. This is just a 21st century projection onto a 19th century tale, and it is a prime example of how Hollywood is almost entirely incapable of producing any kind of halfway convincing period piece. The writers, directors, and actors who inhabit the place appear to be uniformly convinced that at every period of history (from the American frontier to Medieval Europe to the court of Kublai Khan) that everyone at every point in history seemed to think and act exactly like contemporary people in Hollywood.
Watching the ending of this movie is one step removed from viewing an entire production of Richard III, only to be told in the final scene that Shakespeare's evil King was the way he was because his father had never spent any quality time with him as a child, or to be told in the middle of Great Expectations that the reason Estella treated Pip so badly was because her parents messy divorce caused her to have self-esteem issues culminating in general meanness and a severe case of bulimia, or perhaps that the real reason Huck Finn left home to float down the Mississippi was that his step-father was a verbally abusive meth-head who refused to let him listen to his music.