Saturday, October 9, 2010

Instant Trash: Death of a Ghost Hunter

Again- what can I say?  This title tells me exactly what is going to happen!  Is it wrong to put SPOILERS on the title of the film itself?!?  This 2007 film was an attempt to cash in on the craze set by the Sci-Fi (pre-name change) Channel.  Yes, emulate the channel whose biggest all-time rating came from Mega-Piranha!  The film stars Patti Tindall, an actress that I know from...well, nothing.  It's Director is Sean Tretta, the man behind...again, nothing I've seen.  All I need to know is that he made The Great American Snuff Film.  Yeah, that says enough.  So, yeah, this film is about a ghost hunter who goes to check out a house and, may or may not, die.  Just note that this film very much pre-dates The Last Exorcism- not that I care about that film either.  Are you ready to feel the pain?  Get out your death box for my review of...
We get some Blair Witch-style introductions explaining how this woman went to the Masterson house in order to make $5k.  She did not live to release this, so what we're seeing is her own footage mixed with her notes.  Translation: you couldn't commit to making this a 'found footage' film, but still want to act like it is.  That's freaking sad!  She talks to people nearby and learns that a family tragedy happened.  They like to be a little vague about it, but only to set-up the stupid resolution.  The lead theory is this: the mother killed everyone and blew her brains out.  Joining the woman on her ghost expedition is a cameraman, a blond woman who has a point to be here later and a reporter who is covering the story.  How sad is your town that your newspaper is sending a reporter to cover shit like this?  The filmmakers waste a lot of time explaining how ghost hunting works.  Thanks for explaining EVP to us, by the way.  It's not like a hit film was made about that or anything!  We got a ton of filler here too.  If you like wandering around, this is your film!
After more wandering around and talking, stuff actually happens.  First, a chair gets slid along the floor by nobody.  Wow, that is interesting...except that you can make that effect with magnets on the chair and a fake floor.  Special effects that a 7th Grade play can do- priceless!  Next, they wander around for a bit more until they hear a ghost talking.  I won't even get into the logistics of how that is supposed to work!  The spirit of the dead girl is visible on the camera- way to upgrade to the higher-end model- but appears to just be her doll in person.  While this is interesting, it leads to nothing much at all.  Tensions rise when the ghost of the mother makes contact with our heroine, causing her to see visions of what we already saw.  Thanks- that was helpful.  This leads her to say that the mother really was the killer, infuriating the blond girl.  After a tussle, she reveals the truth.  She's part of a Christian group who wants to stop them from putting the blame on the family members for the murders.  This causes her to be kicked out, but not before she apparently pisses on the clothes of the reporter.  Thanks- that was necessary!
I'm getting bored just writing about this movie, so I'll make this brief.  The crew wander around some more, after learning that the blond from earlier is a lone, crazy woman.  Speaking of the woman, she's at home with some weird box they found in the closet.  Naturally, she puts it on her head and goes crazy via some more rehashed flashbacks- sure, why not?!?  Back at the house, the group gets split up and killed by an unseen assailant.  The mix of POV and normal film-making is getting really annoying, by the way.  The whole group is down, leading to us seeing the blond woman come to the house, write a note like the mother and shoot herself.  At this point, the narrative stops to explain everything to us.  Do you have to?  Basically, the father was a religious fanatic who would 'scare straight' girls in his own home, while abusing his family.  When he knocks up one 'subject,' the wife turns on him, kills her two kids (thanks, movie) and then herself.  However, the baby delivered from the 'subject' was saved by a cop and raised as, you guessed it, the blond girl.  Following that, they break the narrative some more to set up a confusing ending.  I'd explain it, but I don't care.  The End.
This movie sucks!  I mean, it sucks in every way that you can imagine.  The film's producers couldn't be bothered to make a 'found footage' film, so they made this convoluted mess.  Why did you put narrative captions on the cards if you wanted it to seem real?  By the way, 'real' is not equivalent to long, boring scenes of people talking!  The whole premise is just stupid- a ghost killer, really?!?  I get the reason why you made this movie when you did, but it's still not interesting.  Your super-tiny cast and one location is not cute either.  I can endure movies like this, but I can't really recommend it to others.  Even seeing it for free on my computer made me feel like I was ripped off.  That's time I could have spent whittling or watching paint dry!  I like to see unique premises in horror films, I really do, but make them good and we'll talk!
Next up, we begin 'Dracula Week,' with every film having 'The Count's name in it.  First up, an Asylum film about...Elizabeth Bathorly- no, really.  Stay tuned...


  1. Wow! I had a complete different reaction to this movie. I also liked the ending and the killer ghost, although I do agree with you as far as the way back story was delivered.

    And you do know you can whittle and watch movies at the same time, right? Whittling (well, actually sketching) has helped me get through some REALLY boring movies without the help of the x30 speed on the DVD player. :D

  2. the worst thing about the review is now DOAGH sounds so fucking bad i totally wanna watch it to see if it is!!!


  3. fight the urge, SP, this is garbage.. Alec hit on all the terrible facts so I will spare you any more film hate