The Amityville Curse

08/17/2015 20:12

Film: The Amityville Curse

Year: 1989

Director: Tom Berry

Writer: Michael Krueger and Norvell Rose

Starring: Kim Coates, Dawna Wightman and Helen Hughes



This film begins with priest, played by Jan Rubes. He is told by his assistant, played by Helen Hughes, that it is time for him to take confession. The house that they are in is the rectory and it is supposed to be the Amityville house. Rubes goes to the church around the corner and into the confessional booth. Someone locks the door by putting a pole through the handle. Rubes is then killed by someone he is taking confession from. Hughes finds him and screams.

The film then shifts forward 12 years. We have a married couple played by David Stein and Dawna Wightman. They are on their way to Amityville to look for a house to buy. When they cross a bridge, Wightman tells Stein to turn immediately. Wightman is psychic and has visions. She brings them right to the Amityville house and sees it is for sale.

We then learn that Stein actually flips houses. The rest of his crew shows up. There is Kim Coates. He is recently married to Cassandra Gava. There is also Anthony Dean Rubes, who is actually the real life son of the priest Jan Rubes. Before they go inside, Wightman sees a boy standing on a path near the house, staring at her. The boy is played by Scott Yaphe and he has a dog with him.

While in the house, Wightman breaks through a tile in the kitchen and twists her ankle. Stein is filming the house as they begin to try to turn it. There is no water or electricity when they first arrive so they have to use candles for the time being. They do find items from the church stored in the basement, including the confessional booth.

That night we really get to meet the characters. Coates is quiet and he continuously messes with the fire. Stein is actually a psychologist and acts like he is better than everyone. Rubes is a nice guy, who is single and works out quite a bit. Gava is odd, but still sensible. Wightman feels there is something wrong with the house. They all share a toast and Gava’s glass breaks. A piece cuts into her hand.

Wightman immediately begins having nightmares about the place. They start to tell the tale of what happened there. Yaphe has something to do it.

The next day Hughes shows up looking for her cat. She just walks in and she has grown quite eccentric. She gives a little bit about the house and some of its history.

The group decides to go out to the local bar. They have a good time in their own ways, aside from Coates who is not feeling well. He stays home. Stein speaks with some locals and they tell him about the boy who was possessed and murdered his family who lived in their house. They say that other weird things happen in their town since. Stein doesn’t believe it.

People in the house begin to start seeing things. Wightman has visions and nightmares of Jan Rubes being murdered in his confessional. How Yaphe was a suspect and he hung himself. His dog attacks Anthony Rubes. Wightman continuously writes the phrase ‘Forgive Me 111’. She also sees the number on the mirror after she gets out of the shower. What does it mean? Gava while bathing has the water turn to blood and her hand looks severely infected with dark blood. Hughes also comes to the house again looking for her cat. She ends up falling down the stairs, or was she pushed? What is the story with Jan Rubes and who killed him? Is the killer caught? What was the motive? Is the house haunted?

The first thing I have to point out is that I really like Coates as an actor. It is fun to see him so young in one of his earlier films. With that said, he doesn’t have a lot of screen time in this one. From there, the acting overall in this film is okay. No one really stood out, but the acting didn’t hurt this film. There were a couple of creepy parts, but nothing overly scary either. The film had the potential to have a good story, but I think it moves too slowly and takes too long to establish anything.

My biggest gripe with this film is that as a sequel it completely ignores its predecessors. This film completely disregards the original film. This one also uses what looks to be a completely different house. The only history they bring up would be that the DeFeo family lived in the house at one point and there is no mention of what happened to the Lutz family. This film might have been better to try to be different and stand alone instead of using the namesake to try to make money. The problem though is that this is based off a novel by Hans Holzer, so it had to be an Amityville film. With that said, the story for this one was completely non-existent until the end. Then it gets farfetched. I believe they under utilized Coates in this aspect as well. The other problem is that it moves too slowly to build tension or some real good scares either.

I would avoid watching this film. It is not very good in general. I would only recommend seeing this one if you are a big fan of the Amityville series and are out to see all of them. This one has decent acting, but almost no story. There are some creepy parts, but for the most part the pacing is way too slow and it does not build enough tension. I think most everyone will be disappointed with this one, so I would avoid it unless as I have stated, you are a huge Amityville fan and you want to see all of them.


My Rating: 3 out of 10