Films featuring
Lili Taylor

The Haunting

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Rule #1 in telling a good ghost story: the less you show of the ghost, the better. Robert Wise understood that in 1963, Jan de Bont ignores it in 1999.

For the first half of this new adaptation of Shirley Jackson’s classic novel, the story follows the book and the original movie with reasonable fidelity, and thus for the first hour, The Haunting is reasonably effective and spooky. The ghostly manifestations are done with sound and suggestion, not ham-handed visuals. After that, however, the special effects take over and the film loses all narrative cohesion.

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