Thursday, 14 July 2011
Review : The Ghosts of Crowley Hall (2008)
Posing as a factual document of a paranormal investigation that went very wrong sometime in recent years. GHOSTS OF CROWLEY hall follows the blueprint of ghost hunting shows such as Britain's MOST HAUNTED, and Americas GHOST HUNTERS.
What in gods name was THIS? I'm at a loss as to what I just sat through. Even now, at the end I have no idea if GHOSTS OF CROWLEY HALL is factual or fictional. Now, for a found footage film that is surely a great sign. After all, look at the success BLAIR WITCH PROJECT enjoyed by fooling the masses. In this sub genre, reality is, of course, key to success.
But this is different. You see, the reason I believed at first that this cheap wino's version of MOST HAUNTED was a fictional work, was down to the sheer lack of personality in its cast/crew. I assumed that this was down to severely amateur acting, especially on the part of the psychic, and the fact that the crew filming the whole thing had practically ZERO equipment you expect to find on a paranormal investigation. Sure, the film has all the usual suspects when it comes to human behaviour. Yeah we get all that shit in spades. Theres a seance with a shaking table we've all seen faked a thousand times on TV, and there's plenty of never-ending shots of some gormless 'investigator' shouting in the dark, 'Is anyone there?', then declaring, 'DID YOU HEAR THAT?!' when theres clearly absolutely no sound at all. Zero, zip, other than the endless excitable whispers of said gormless wonder, and the occasional bump, which OBVIOUSLY must be a ghostie or ghoulie. We get tons of night vision, and of course, we get the supposed psychic being possessed and falling about the damn place like a badger on crack. We've seen all this shit before. But never so blandly. SO it had to be fiction, right. Just some bad choices made by some talent free horror enthusiasts? Fuck knows, And I'll explain soon why I'm flip flopping.
Now, I used to really enjoy MOST HAUNTED, and find GHOST HUNTERS to be a fun watch too when I come across it online. I'm a firm believer in alternate and infinite dimensions, AND astral projection. And while I'm as non-religious as any man you'll ever find, I am a very spiritual person. I'm a believer, in short, but I sure as hell am no believer in these shows. I loved MOST HAUNTED for a number of reason in its first few seasons. One being that I have a huge appetite for historical buildings and the stories that come with them, and the other being that it featured a psychic called Derek Acorah, who is among the most entertaining frauds as your likely to find in this life. The show was FUN, the crew, however dumb, were fun to hang around with. It was a good time. GHOST HUNTERS follows suite, albeit in a slightly more professional guise. Believer or not, these are, or were, entertaining shows.
With GHOSTS OF CROWLEY HALL though, your landed for 90 long minutes with a bunch of fucking pod-people, with no personality whatsoever. And it was only around the 20 minute mark that I began to think this whole thing had to be REAL. See, theres no character development. Hell, theres no CHARACTERS, and no one would write something with such nondescript bobble-heads taking centre stage, surely. As time endlessly wound on and my night gradually lost all color and all hope, I was CONVINCED. Nothing fucking happens the whole running time. NOTHING. The film ended just as morosely as it began, and I figured to myself, 'thats it then, Kyle. Its real. Fuck all happened. Just like a real investigation. Mystery solved!'
After two minutes of further thought, I back tracked again. Now, I really don't know or give damn either way. The real mystery is why I spent an over an hour in the company of such eminently punchable mugs. I got nothing from this thing, other than a headache as I scoured afterwards online trying to work out what the hell I'd just witnessed. I'm still no wiser. Utter shit movie, or ridiculously amateur paranormal investigation with a junkie psychic? I have no idea. All I know is I want to eat my own eyes.
Avoid this nonsense like you have a life. I suffer these horrors so you don't have to. I'm like Jesus, with better hair. And don't get me wrong guys. I would LOVE to go on a ghost hunt. Ive always wanted to spend a night investigating some spooky derelict hotel or castle. I think it'd be great. But if these clowns are real, and by that I mean real people FAKING it, (or non actors faking it, I cant even explain myself anymore), and they asked me to go on an all expenses paid trip to the most haunted location in the UNIVERSE. My response would simply be, 'leave me alone or I'll have you killed'. Too harsh? YOU watch it then! I'll be in the pub.
0 Intolerable Wankers out of 10
(AUTHORS NOTE : For fear of this actually being real, I had to hold back a little, guys. Its fun to rip on fictional characters, but theres a chance these guys are real. Well, except the psychic. Shes a fake no matter what the circumstances.)