This is it! I have been working up to this post quicker than I thought I would have. Even though the last week slowed things down for me, I made it all the same. If you are wondering what I am rambling on about, this post makes number 400 for me. As regular readers have figured out by now, every 50 posts I will pull out an old favorite to watch. Instead of giving it a review like I normally do, I just like to talk about it instead. For this post, I decided to revisit The Amityville Horror (1979). I decided on this one because I haven't watched it in a really long time. Since I always watch the film before doing one of these write ups, it was nice to have watched it again, and to have some old memories come back.
My story about my first time watching this film goes back about eight years, or so, ago. During Halloween night, there was to be a run of The Amityville Horror films on TV. The channel was going to run the first three, along with a film called The Entity. While I had heard about The Amityville Horror films, might have even watched one of the sequels by then, the other film was a new one to me. I had talked my dad into watching the films with me. I don't think that is how he really wanted to spend his night, but he did it for me. Since this was a time I was still fairly new to horror films, it didn't take a lot to creep me out. The first film aired and it scared me, along with the second film. The third film, second sequel, was a little silly to me from what I remember. The third film came out in theaters in 3D, so as I recall, it looked a little silly to me not being in 3D. The last film was also a creepy film. By the end of the second film, I knew there was no way I was sleeping alone that night. Dad pulled out the hide-a-bed and that is where we slept after the last film was over. Such fun memories.
So what was it that made The Amityville Horror so scary to me? It was a few different factors actually. Possibly the most important factor was that I was still fairly new to enjoying horror films. I was still scared by them, but I could now enjoy being scared. As time goes on, you start to figure out that a lot of the stories are done over again, and they become less scary. Also, one starts to figure out the whens and hows of the jump scares. Another factor was that I believed in what I was seeing. It was based on a true story after all. I had heard other people talking about it now and then. And there was even a book out there, which I have yet to read. I don't want to make myself seem too naive here, so I will say that I didn't believe everything in the film. I could see it, and its sequel (since we know the murders happened) to be more real than other horror films. I can't say that I have ever seen a ghost, but I am pretty sure I have felt one. That is a story for another day though. Back when I watched this film for the first time, I wanted to believe that ghosts and other such things, could be real. Here is a movie that claims to be based on actual events, which made me want to believe all the more.
Having watched The Amityville Horror again, I noticed that it didn't have the same affect on me. To be honest, I didn't really expect it to. It did make me smile though, since it brought back memories of that night long ago. There were things I didn't remember from watching it before. I have watched it since then, but only in sections. I would turn it on late or not finish it once it started. The things I have forgotten were minor things really. Watching the whole film now, I realize that some things come across as kind of silly. Giant pig anyone? It is still a good film though. I like that they didn't really try and over sell it, until the end of the film. Everything else were small things happening. Added all together though, I can see how it could run a person down. I really liked the casting choice of James Brolin. The way he looks in the film, it isn't much of a stretch to me that he turns slightly crazy. Just the way he looks through the whole film. The turn to being slightly crazy matches the wild looks he has about him.
The cool thing about watching the DVD was the single extra it had on it. The documentary features both James Brolin and Margot Kidder. I'm not sure when it was filmed, but it does look fairly recent. It was cool to see what they look like now. Each talked a little about their career, as well as the movie itself. They gave some interesting insights into how they got involved with the film. I learned that they didn't get along really well during the making of the film. It was an interesting documentary. If you enjoyed the film, then you should give it a watch. After watching the DVD, I got on YouTube and checked out some of the old TV shows that are listed there, that carried stories about the murders and haunting. I'm not sure I believe the real story. Drop me a comment and let me know what you thought of The Amityville Horror and the actual story it was based on.
4 days ago