The Apparition (2012)

Posted by Maria Mills | Posted on 5:26 PM | Posted in

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Movie Review written by: Born Movie Reviews
RT Critics Rating: 0.4/10

Born Movie Reviews' Rating: 3/10

THE APPARITION (2012) - Todd Lincoln

When a movie trailer is released, we are always given an impression of what the film is about and what themes it is going to explore. Ever seen a trailer where it is completely different from the film itself? Worse, ever had that happen to you where the trailer ends up being more interesting than the actual film? For a movie that was not screened early for critics, The Apparition is a prime example of this confusing misstep. The scariest part about this movie is the fact that the company that was hiding this from pre-screening was actually Warner Bros.

The Apparition begins with six people in 1973, conducting the Charles Experiment, where they attempt to summon a spirit. The film then jumps to present time and revolves around young couple Kelly and Ben (Ashley Greene, Sebastian Stan) who find their house being haunted by spirits. This haunting is caused by four college students, including Ben, who attempted to recreate the Charles Experiment by using modern technology and ended up opening a portal between the supernatural world and the human world.

The acting in this film is very flat -- the only good thing is Ashley Greene, but only if you are already a fan of her in the Twilight franchise. Other than her, Sebastian Stan is flat, and even Tom Felton appearing in a minor role is flat. Come to think of it, Felton is now the second Harry Potter actor who approaches the horror genre when the franchise ended, the first being Daniel Radcliffe in The Woman in Black. To be a little forgiving, I would not say that the acting is "bad." However, I would say that the actors had almost nothing to work with here and as a result, their performances are simply uninteresting. The pacing of the script is lackluster. The dialogue is lackluster. Literally everything that shapes the substance of a film is lackluster here. It seems here that the filmmakers are not even trying to make a cinematic piece of horror. They refuse to take the time to flesh out characters, they refuse to take the time to explain the rules of the film's world. They just simply take the audience, throws them into the dark, and "pokes" them once in a while with loud noises.

The Apparition is not scary at all. This is a movie that is completely flooded with horror cliches, where if you are smart enough, you can see every single scare coming. When something intense is coming up, the music queue kicks in. When some loud noise is coming up, the movie goes dead silent. It is utterly predictable, familiar, been-there-done-that, and sometimes even tedious. To quote Entertainment Weekly, the only reason you will have a restless night is because "you fell asleep in the theater."

The worst part about The Apparition is that not only is it cliche in the horror genre and offers nothing new, but the film also kept trying to be a spin-off of The Grudge. The whole idea that the spirits are malevolent and follow the characters no matter where they go -- it is almost a rip-off of the curse in The Grudge, where it never lets you go. The problem is that The Apparition is just not scary, and in finishing this movie, there is nothing more than wanting to re-watch The Grudge. In enhancing the negativities of this film, what is worse than a movie that is not scary? A movie that is also uninteresting and slow.

The Apparition is the perfect example of everything that is wrong with Hollywood in the horror genre, where people in the industry just sit around and come up with a list of gimmicks that are designed to just scare people in a dark setting. However, if you grade it on a curve, this is even worse because of the lifeless narrative. Now, for the trailer.

Let me make this as simple as possible: Go online and watch the trailer. At least that is free. Anything you hear and see that is related to the words "believe" and "real," they are not here in the actual movie. Let me just put it at that.

In conclusion, The Apparition is a terribly uninteresting horror film that drags in its narrative and leaves the actors in limbo not knowing what to do but act scared. To be honest, the story could have been somewhat interesting, and if the film made us care about the characters, this could have been a terrifying thriller that is comparable to this year's Sinister. Sadly, The Apparition does not even try to be a work of horror filmmaking. Instead, it pummels us with flat (not always bad) acting, mediocre dialogue, a lot of blackness, a lot of cliches, and has no point at the end of the day. It is the most shameful disappointment of a horror movie and might even be put into a book called "How Not To Make A Horror Movie 101." If you watched the trailer like I asked you to, you have seriously seen it all. Literally.

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