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House on Haunted Hill (1999) 1999 R CC

In this thriller, five people agree to spend the night in a haunted house in exchange for one million dollars but they must live through the night to receive it.

Starring:
Geoffrey Rush, Famke Janssen
Runtime:
1 hour, 32 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Horror
Director William Malone
Starring Geoffrey Rush, Famke Janssen
Supporting actors Taye Diggs, Ali Larter, Bridgette Wilson, Peter Gallagher, Chris Kattan
Studio Warner Bros.
MPAA rating R (Restricted)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video and digital download)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Released at almost the same time as the awful "The Haunting" I wasn't expecting much, but this movie delivers.

A terrifically creepy and nasty opening and the jolting modern day introduction set us up nicely. An able cast is brought to the haunted house where unspeakable things were done to mental patients who's revenge we witnessed at the outset. Geoffrey Rush is great, doing a nice oily tribute to the inimitable Vincent Price (of the 50's version of this story).

Great stuff follows with two plots unwinding simultaneously, the fake and the real "haunting". The images of the good "doctor" appearing in the camcorder and on the surveillance cameras was terrific. I wish the whole movie could have sustained the chills generated by the "just-glimpsed-then-gone" evil and the hackle-raising stare and smile of these apparitions. And, of course Geoffrey Rush's trip in the psychotic chamber is worth the price of admission alone.

Unfortunately, someone decided they could forego the sinister doctor and his minions and victims for a big CG finish that ISN'T scary and ISN'T creepy. And so the movie ends with a bang that is actually a whimper. Too bad, they were really on to something in the buildup prior to that. Could have been great.

But, the ending is only the ending, and the leadup to it has enough good stuff to make it worth a look.
Comment 37 of 40 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
In my hasty review that appears before this one, I truly misjudged the 1999 film "House on Haunted Hill," pawning it off as a cheap teenage horror flick comparable to "The Rage: Carrie 2." However, I was gravely mistaken, for this movie is full of all the elements that make a horror movie great. Based on the 1959 film of the same name starring Vincent Price, the 1999 version updates characters and storyline to suit modern audiences with lavish special effects and superbly filmed horror sequences. The film begins during the house's years as a mental institution for the criminally insane, as Dr. Vannacutt is performing experiments on his patients as a way of eliminating them. The inmates soon take over the sanitarium, killing all but five members of the staff, who escape as the place burns down. Skip ahead to 1999, with Steven Price (Geoffrey Rush) honoring his wife Evelyn's (Famke Janssen) wishes for a birthday party at the Vannacutt Psychiatric Sanitarium, newly remodeled into a residential home. When they arrive at the house, they discover that the guests are not the ones they invited, and both of them deny inviting the people present. The thrills begin when the "lockdown" occurs, a mechanism that encloses all windows, doors, and other means of exit, trapping Price and his guests inside. What truly makes this movie enjoyable is the fact that for the duration of the film, we do not know whether Price or the house itself is wreaking the havoc experienced by those left alive. Geoffrey Rush is terrific as Price, giving the original character, played by Vincent Price, his due justice. Famke Janssen gives sass and haughtiness to the script as Evelyn Price, and her stance and attitude make her character's moves very unique and believable.Read more ›
Comment 35 of 39 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
The opening sequence of William Malone's remake of "House on Haunted Hill" is a wonderful setup for the rest of the movie, which is brilliant mish-mash of horror, gore, intelligence, wit and frights galore. It's a feast for the senses that never lets up nor fails to please. While not the best remake of a movie in history, it is a valid and admirable effort, and has quite an adult feel to it that rises over that of the teenage horror films that have dominated movie screens the past decade.
The opening sequence takes place in the secluded Vannacutt Psychiatric Institution for the Criminally Insane, where Dr. Vannacutt's unethical experimentation on his patients leave nothing to the imagination. One night, the patients lead a bloody rebellion, trapping everyone in the asylum and setting it aflame, killing everyone inside; only a handful of the staff members survive. Scoot ahead to the present, where amusement park tycoon Steven Price is being haggled by his narcissistic wife to have her birthday party at the newly remodeled insitute, which has been converted into an expensive mansion. Sound like contrivance? It is, but hey, give it a break: it's a horror movie.
Price puts the finishing touches on his wife's guest list, but when everyone arrives at the mansion, they discover they were not the ones intended for the party. Husband and wife think that the other is responsible, while the guests, Eddie, Sara, Melissa, and Donald, are just as confused as to the reason for being invited to a total stranger's party at an even stranger location. Price explains to the group that if they stay in the house throughout the remainder of the night, they will receive $1,000,000 each, despite the repeated warnings of Pritchett, who is convinced the spirits of past inhabitants permeate the house.
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Comment 12 of 13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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A Kid's Review on May 24, 2002
Format: DVD
Why does everybody have to be so critical? It was fun, okay?! And one of the scariest movies I've ever seen. It looks like something out of my nightmares. So, to me, it was scary. Stop trying to sound like some sophisticated uptight film critic (which you know you aren't) and enjoy it!!!!!
Comment 18 of 21 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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