[The Apparition]
Synopsis:Follows frightening events which start to occur in the home of young couple Kelly (Greene), and Ben (Stan). They soon discover they are being haunted by a presence that was accidentally conjured during a university parapsychology experiment. The horrifying apparition feeds on their fear and torments them no matter where they try to run. Their last hope is an expert in the supernatural (Felton), but even with his help they may already be too late to save themselves from this terrifying force.

Cast:Ashley Greene, Luke Pasqualino, Sebastian Stan, Julianna Guill, Tom Felton.


Review:I had been waiting a long time to finally see "The Apparition". It was a horror film that I had really been looking forward to seeing for awhile. I was admittedly excited about it. Even after its release dates were pushed back a few times. The film was finally released to theaters in August of this year. And is now available on DVD.

As a person who's just watched the film on disc. It's sad to see such great sound track and effects, wasted on such a bad movie. And yes, if you've guessed that this review is headed in a negative direction. How perceptive of you. To notice that me feeling pity for the sound effects portion of the home disc release, indicates that the film itself was ultra shitty. "The Apparition" starts off quite nicely though. I mean, the beginning holds so much potential for the film.

While watching the opening 5 minutes on my big screen, I'm thinking..."wow, why did people hate this movie so much?" And then after that initial 5 minutes, there was that hour and ten minutes that followed. And that my friends, was the birage of final nails, into this movies coffin. In the beginning, we are introduced to a group of research students.

Their big "project"...is to attempt communication with the other side. In something that is called the "Charles Experiment". Sounds a lot more exciting than it is, trust me. And if you've seen the classic horror movie "Poltergeist" (and who hasn't)...then you already know what "the other side"...is. Anyways, apparently...a group of scientific researchers, had already attempted this experiment many years earlier. And each of them met grissly and untimely demises.

Apparently, their seance opened a doorway, where a malevolent entity escaped into the human world. It soon targeted the researchers, driving some suicidally insane, while outright killing the others. And these noobs, armed with this knowledge...still attempt to recreate The Charles Experiment anyways. Smart move eh? By the way, did I mention that this Charles guy was a comrade of the parapsychologists seen in flashbacks at the start of the movie?
And has NO relation to the noobs who attempt this experiment? Played by Julianna Guill, Tom Felton, and Luke Pasqualino? Why on earth, would you risk opening a doorway to the dead to contact someone you don't effing know? And then on top of all of that, call your experiment "The Charles Experiment"? These idiots deserved to die based on the rules of trademark infringement alone. I mean would it have hurt that much to at least retitle your experiment to..."The Charles Experiment II", or "Return To The Charles Experiment"? Or..."The Patrick Experiment"? Or something original?

So of course, once they begin the experiment, which includes a funny-looking statuette, placed in the middle of the table. The same entity begins to target them. However, one of their comrades, Ben (Sebastian Stan)...bailed on the experiment because he figured it was effing crazy of a thing to do. But that doesn't stop Ben from being targeted by the entity after the previous three students are dispatched of.

Along with Ben's girlfriend Kelly (Ashley Greene). Once "The Apparition" makes itself at home in their home...their dream home soon becomes a nightmare. So, as far as ghost movies go...this film is pretty damned pathetic. Our "Apparition" apparently has limited abilities. And every good horror movie fan knows, that a ghost movie, will only go as far as how cool its spectre is.

If the ghost doesn't display any abilities beyond turning the lights off and on, closing some doors, and popping a few light bulbs. Oh and...creepy ceiling mold...then you've got yourself one lame ass spirit. However, the film goes out of its way to convince the viewer that this is not a "spirit". No, it's some sort of mysterious being that is older than demons and ghosts. And it apparently has the ability to make you believe in "its" reality.

Until it can then take you away forever. So with that being said, you'd be expecting some cool 3D type stuff right? Like..."What Dreams May Come"? Or "Silent Hill"? Well, no. This movie sticks to a code of boredom. Nothing eventful happens in this picture. The title monster just freaks the couple out from time to time. By making funny noises, leaving marks on the kitchen counter, and appearing as mold in the ceiling. I was not impressed. And it's amazing how some decent, young acting talent was wasted in this film.

Even the beginning manages to commit suicide very quickly. The start of the movie shows off the fact that the entity arrived in our world through Patrick, Lydia, and Greg's experiment. But beyond some fancy light tricks, there's nothing to suggest imminent danger. The movie even displays the most pathetic trick of all. Which is..."FADING TO BLACK AND SCREAMS FOLLOWED BY LOUD NOISES AND BANGS". This is what a movie does when...A)They're on a PG-13 rating and can't do the blood and gore thing. B) The writer is not very talented and has no imagination, or C) All of the above. Considering this film was rated PG-13, I'm gonna go with A).

After the experiment occurs, and this weird light beam circles the trio...the lights quickly go off, and we get a bunch of screams, bangs, and Guill's character yelling "Oh my god what is that?!". Of course the viewer, "me"...can't see jack so I took the opportunity to go grab a cold Mountain Dew. Which I later ended up using as a compress for my head because by 45 minutes into this movie I had a migraine "this big". I really cannot fathom what the hell the point of this movie was. I mean, we don't ever see "The Apparition".

Except once, during a pretty noisy scene effects wise. But it's not really, anything. Just a damn shadow. Who's gonna be afraid of a shadow? And this thing seems to enjoy messing with people instead of doing anything cool, or wicked. It's as if it has no plan except to screw with folks heads. We've seen spirits, demons, or ghosts do this in genre flicks before. But they usually have an "end game". A "plan". This ghost, apparition, entity, or whatever seemed to just wanna bore folks to death. I don't get why this movie was so afraid to take it to the next level. Even at PG-13, I've seen supernatural works really put forth a far better effort than this.

Ashley Greene and Sebastian Stan aren't bad actors. At least in my opinion. But this script traps both of them in an endless loop of totally un-scary, BS. For example, the film contains about 15 scenes of Greene's character being frightened by the title monster, and then her "man" rolls in and asks what happened? She tells him, and he just says "fuck it, go back to bed." Or "fuck it, go back to doing whatever you were doing and I'll do the same." Not EXACTLY those words, but you get my drift. He's totally aloof to all of this. And even when the film reveals a slight twist, that Ben (Stan), knows what is happening, or at least has an idea that it might be connected to the experiment he was AWOL for, he still decides to just pretend stuff isn't happening.
ut it's easy though when the audience doesn't believe it either! I mean this evil spirit is not even EVIL. It's more like, mischievous. And in some cases, annoying. And when the film delivers another twist. That comes in the form of one of the moron-trio surviving the aforementioned "Charles Experiment Part Deux"...it tries to expand on our villain about its aforementioned origins. Yet fails miserably! I felt this film should've been two hours with more script.

Mostly, pertaining to the background of our Apparition. You cannot just hype up a movie monster as older than demons and ghosts, and just have it pop light bulbs, kill a dog, and blacken the kitchen ceiling from time to time. I mean really. I've been to pool halls scarier than this film. And yes, sadly...a K9 does "bite it", no pun intended in this movie. But if these amateurs want a lesson on how unsettling pet deaths in a horror movie should be done, they should take a look at "Paranormal Activity 2" for a course on that. If there's 1, at least 1 bright spot in this film. It's a scene at a motel. As our young couple finally become too creeped out staying at their place thanks to the ghost. So they check into a motel for awhile.

Of course, we all know THAT NEVER, works! And so it's only a matter of time before the Apparition rears it's ugly shadow-head, and goes on the attack. Wrapping Kelly up inside a bed sheet in what seemed to be an attempted possession. It was a pretty creepy scene, and quite effective. Now if the movie could've just had 4 or so more scenes like that strolled throughout? Maybe it wouldn't have sucked so badly. As if things couldn't get any worse, the ending of the movie just loses what's left of ts marbles.

New explanations for the haunting are introduced, followed by a ridiculous "how have you survived this long?", reveal for one character. And a "fake relief" scene that follows. You guys know the "fake relief" scene in horror films right? When the characters believe disaster has been averted. And they try and make us believe the same? Except we..."the audience"...are not nearly that stupid? Yeah, that old cliche makes an appearance again. Oh but it gets worse...TRUST ME! See, the writer then steers the film into the direction of ripping off chunks of the story line from "Pulse" (2006)!

Yes, the remake of "Pulse", that most folks didn't like. Actually is given validity in this film by the writers attempt at stealing the framework of its plot, and retrofitting it to his movie! AMAZING! Yet, sad and disappointing as well. In the end, I was hoping for a decent finale to give me something good to say about this movie. But I didn't even get that. What happens at the end is just ridiculous, juvenile, and borderline retarded. I weep for the folks who spent over $15 dollars at the actual multiplex seeing this film. But hey, at least it wasn't in 3D right? "Shrug".

THE GOOD:The motel/bedroom scene was pretty well done, cool, and creepy. As was the beginning of the film. Opening credits and all. Too bad the movie nosedives like a drunken vulture into epic failure after starting out so well.

THE BAD:Close to everything. The lack of scares, lack of suspense, pathetic excuse for a ghost, apparition, evil spirit, elf...or whatever the hell it was. Also some of the explanations for the stuff that went down just didn't fly. While there were many things left unanswered and ultimately, it hurt the quality of the script in the end.

OVERALL:One star out of four.

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