A Haunted House


“A Haunted House” is scary alright.

It’s scary as hell that anyone ever thought that this offensive piece of garbage would be funny.

Vulgar, racist, contemptible, nauseating, dim-witted, and ultimately pitiable, “A Haunted House” makes a strong early bid at Worst Movie of 2013.

There isn’t much need for a plot summary in regards to “A Haunted House”. It’s a parody film of the “Paranormal Activity” series, with a side serving of “The Devil Inside”. As such, it follows the basic framework of a possessed girlfriend, who moves into her boyfriend’s house, who in turn then sets up a barrage of surveillance cameras in an attempt to further understand the events that are transpiring.

However, the things that transpire in this case aren’t just of the comedic, supernatural parody variety, there are also graphic sexual situations, racism, homophobia, drug use, flatulation, defecation, urination, and vomit. I know, I know, how did I NOT find that funny?

Yes, the creative talents behind this movie seem intent on finding comedy at the bottom of the vulgar barrel, regardless of how deeply they have to dig. For example, there’s a scene where Wayons character, excited by the possibilities inherent in having a video camera set up in his bedroom while he and his girlfriend have sex, gets carried away while she gets ready by pretending to get it on with the stuffed animals in the room. While that might not sound like the worst comedic concept ever, it’s the persistence that makes it nauseating. I think you’d have to cross reference the Kama Sutra in order to find positions he missed. It goes a good two, three minutes, easily. He goes at it so enthusiastically that I swear, somewhere there must be a stuffed animal fetishist community that will hail this movie as their holy grail.

My problems certainly aren’t limited to a single scene, and that’s actually probably one of the movie’s funnier moments (which isn’t to say it was funny, mind you). I just want to use it to illustrate the commitment to their bad jokes they use here. Yeah, if they don’t make you laugh when one of the couple rips an atomic fart, maybe they’ll get you if one of them actually defecates on the floor. If you’re not laughing at their swinger friends propositioning them, maybe they’ll get you if they show the swingers having a gang bang. The fact that you’re not laughing isn’t going to deter this film from pushing through on their intended course of being graphic, raunchy, crude and lewd in the pursuit of humor.

Of course, none of the cast is remotely capable of turning this crass garbage into gold. Marlon Wayons and Essence Atkins are completely flat in the lead, and their supporting team of Cedric the Entertainer, Dave Sheridan, David Koechner, and Nick Swardson leaves a lot to be desired. With the exception of Cedric, none of them that are very funny people, especially in the absence of strong material. Collectively, they come across as a D list roster, culled together to make a cheap movie on the fly.

“A Haunted House” “spoofs” the source material in a gross and vulgar manner as opposed to finding anything remotely resembling clever satire, the laughs are few and far between, if any.

Like most haunted houses, it will leave you wanting to “Get Out”.


Daniel Fogarty

35 thoughts on “A Haunted House

    • Heh. Well, I don’t want to get locked in, but I will be SHOCKED Mark, SHOCKED if it doesn’t make the nominee field at least. I can’t imagine ten movies worse than this, squeezing it out of contention!

  1. I didn’t expect much but I thought there would be a few silly laughs, and it didn’t even deliver on that. Terrible comedy from start to finish. Perfect way to start off the year, I guess. Good review Fogs.

  2. Holy crap, it looked bad, but not THAT bad. What’s up with the racism and homophobia? That pisses me off more than anything. Well, 3 minutes of someone dry humping a stuffed animal might be up there, too.

  3. A solid F, huh? Sounds like I should stick to my original plan of going to see Amour this weekend.

    Still, I’m a little bit jealous of the fact that your awards “contenders” come out in all months of the year, while mine all wait til the very end…. Not jealous enough to go see this though!

    • LOL…. haha. Yeahhhh I wouldnt be too jealous. At least yours are pretty much gauranteed to be good movies!

      I have to check again to see if Amour is anywhere around me yet. All I want to do is see it before Feb 23… in order to be fully educated on the possibilities, you know? πŸ˜€

      • Yeah, it still isn’t showing at any of my regular theaters, not even the one that usually carries the indie and foreign fare. But I found a theater that’s about an hours drive from my house that is showing it this weekend, and I figured that I better jump on it while I have the chance.

  4. I didn’t like the original Paranormal Activity.
    I dislike the way spoofs are currently done.
    I tend to view each occurrence of a Wayans brother as a demerit to a movie.

    I guess I’m saying I’m not surprised at the grade on this one. I know I’m harder on comedies than you tend to be, but this one just had “bad” written all over it.

    • Yeah, but you know me, I went to see it anyways, just so I could confirm for people.

      It’s probably even worse than you think. I actually like a couple of the “Scary Movies” well enough, there’s some funny to be found there…

      This? Is an irredeemable piece of shite. Valueless. 😦

      • I wondered initially why this wasn’t just Scary Movie 5 or whatever number it’s on… my conclusion was they didn’t want to sully the franchise. Which is saying something. πŸ˜›

      • Actually, for whatever reason, Scary Movie 5 is coming too. Maybe they wanted to do both. Maybe Wayons was striking out on his own to get a bigger piece of the pie or something.

        I saw the trailer for Scary Movie 5 today, LOL> It look sjust as bad except it has cameos from Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan!

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  6. I’m sorry you had to see this. A Haunted House along with Scary Movie 5 this year leaves me with very little hope for humanity. And fucking a stuffed animal is never funny. They have feelings too. Don’t see Calvin molesting Hobbes, now, do we?

    • Ugh. LOL, now THAT’S a creepy thought.

      Yeah, I felt a distinct sense of dread combined with déjà vu when I saw the Scary Movie 5 trailer last weekend. It felt like they were remaking this already. 😦

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