Sam Raimi’s (Spiderman, Evil Dead) Poltergeist 3D is a brave attempt at a remake of the classic film. Despite director Gil Kenan’s (Monster House) modernization of the classic tale, it definitely cannot compare to the original. This being said, this contemporary version does have its good moments.
Sam Rockwall plays the down on his luck, hard to scare, and sarcastic dad Eric Bowen with a solid panache and flair.(Not to mention he delivers some great one liners and comedic relief.) The Bowens family find a new house that they like, only to find out that it was built on top of an old cemetery(their realtor conveniently forgets to mention this to them.) During the first few days of living in the home, strange noises and scary events start happening all around them. The young Madison Bowens (Kennedi Clements) soon starts speaking to to the souls trapped into the house and it leads to her kidnapping and the desperate struggle for her family to find and rescue her. Rosemarie DeWitt does a decent job as the troubled wife Amy, but the other two kids played by Saxon Sharbino (Kendra) and Kyle Catlett (Griffin) kind of get on your nerves.
I found the family to not be as believable and a bit too calm considering the fact that their little girl just disappeared! I would have liked to see a little more freak out factor to be honest. As for scary moments, there were a couple of instances, but nothing compared to films such as “The Conjuring” or “The Ring” where I probably lost quite a bit of sleep over. (An exception could be made for the creepy clowns, but that could just be me.)
Other nice touches were the technology advances like using a drone, cell phone, and the unique view of all the hands on the television set. Another high point was the ghost detective Carrigan played by Jared Harris. He delivered a solid and believable performance as someone who could honestly help this family at the same time deal with his own issues.
The movie was pretty short clocking in at 1 hour and 33 minutes, but is a fun ride if your expectations are not that high.
We give it a 6 out 10.