Monster Monday: Haunter

Haunter tells the story of a family caught in a Groundhog Day level time loop, and the only person who can see through the charade is the eldest daughter Lisa. She reveals in the first two seconds that she and her family are dead, but she is the only one aware of it. She then slowly begins to feel a presence in the house, and it begins taunting her as she delves into the house’s history and what really happened to her family.

This movie is pretty terrible. Abigail Breslin is a great actress, but this is a horrible way to waste her talent. The plot is essentially incoherent. At first it seems like its going to be a typical story of a family finding out they’ve been dead the whole time, but they give up that bombshell in the first two minutes of the movie. It’s not even a spoiler, they reveal it that early. Then you have to figure out who is haunting her, but that’s given away pretty early on too, even if you don’t really know what he is. Then its some serial killer thing. It’s very confusing, and it has no idea what storyline it wants to pursue, so it just half pursues all of them at one time.

All of the scares are exactly where you’d expect them, so honestly even though they are made up of entirely jump scares, they still don’t get to you. All the moments you expect something will probably jump out at you, it will. There’s really no surprise in it. There’s maybe one good jump scare in the whole thing, and even that is forced due to the dumbest decision ever by Breslin’s character.

The only cool effect is during the first part of the finale, and it looks exactly like the opening sequence of a season of American Horror Story. And that’s pushing it, some of the openings of AHS have better story lines than this. Even the finale is weak. The movie has a few tense moments, but overall it’s a pretty decent waste of time.

Haunter wants to be way too many things at one time. It’s a possession movie. It’s a ghost movie. It’s Freaky Friday for a hot second. It’s a serial killer/slasher flick. It’s a female revenge flick. However it’s none of these done well. It overreached and didn’t hit the mark. The plot is muddled and unfocused. Abigail Breslin is given a horrible premise and never gets her chance to really act. The pale man is creepy, but he’s just stand-in Willem Dafoe when it comes down to it. If you want an interesting new horror flick, this isn’t the one for you.

Amy’s Recommendation: 2/10

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