House on Haunted Hill

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2 1/2

Content: -4

What would you do for one million dollars? A group of strangers with failed careers, Eddie (Taye Diggs), Blackburn (Peter Gallagher), Sara (Ali Larter), and Melissa (Bridgette Wilson) are about to answer that question. By mysterious invitation these four strangers have all been drawn to the house on Haunted Hill, formerly Vannacutt Psychiatric Institute for the Criminally Insane. If they can survive just one night in the house, they will receive one million dollars each from Stephen Price (Geoffrey Rush), a billionaire amusement park designer who arranged this bizarre and macabre party to celebrate his wifes birthday. But what neither Mr. Price nor any of his guests know is how closely they are each related to the houses pasta past of twisted human experimentation, torture, and murder. With the House on Haunted Hill hungry for blood and revenge, there seems to be no way out. This remake of the 1958 classic horror tale HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL replaces the classic suspense of its predecessor with gory special effects. Definitely not for the faint-hearted, the film will most likely see its biggest success on opening weekend.

When filmmakers dont know how to truly scare, they resort to grossing viewers out. The opening flashback scene of a violent outbreak in the old psychiatric hospital is replete with a man cut open alive on an operating table, a doctor stabbed to death with pencils, and other staff likewise brutally murdered. Eddie, or a spirit impersonating him, jumps into a tank of blood and Sara is almost pulled in trying to pull him out. Terrifying bloody images of torture flash on the screen as the spirit-possessed house rehashes its dirty past. One woman dies a gruesome and bloody death at the hands of a sadistic spirit. Another mans face is hollowed out and caved in by a mysterious force. Another woman is strapped to a table and given life-threatening levels of electro-shock, with blood pouring out of her mouth when its over. One man is violently stabbed to death with a saw, another shot repeatedly at point blank range. And while not all of the gore is presented as real, the Prices are manufacturing some of it, its all pretty disturbing. And many obscenities, f and s words, and pervasive regular profanities further add to the displeasure. HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL represents modern horror at its worst, a twisted exploitation of violence, dark supernatural elements, and obscene language for box office dollars.

Preview Reviewer: Cliff McNeely
Warner Brothers, 4000 Warner Blvd., Burbank, CA 91522, (818) 954-8000

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (16) times - Mild 8, Moderate 8

Obscene Language: Many (38) times - F-word 20, s-word 15, other 3

Profanity: Many (36) times - Regular 24 (G, 1, J 6, C 1, JC 1, GD 13, G forbid 1, for G sake 1); Exclamatory 12 (Oh G, Oh my G, Oh J)

Violence: Many times - graphic and gory (man slit open alive, violent attack on staff by patients, doctor stabbed to death with pencils, man jumps into tank of blood, bloody images of past torture, womans bloody death by spirit, mans face hollowed out, deathly electroshock treatment on woman, blood from mouths, man decapitated, man stabbed to death with saw blade, woman strangled/thrown through wall, mans body disintegrates)

Sex: None

Nudity: Few times (female breast nudity during torture, female rear nudity of women huddled together)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times (man comments about having sex before he dies, man fondles woman through dress, mild suggestive comments, kissing)

Drugs: Several times (cigar smoking, alcohol)

Other: Dark supernatural elements-spirits possess house, exploitation of gory violence

Running Time: 109 minutes
Intended Audience: Older teens/Young Adults

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