2018, Movies

Winchester (2018, Michael Spierig, Peter Spierig)

This movie exists because somebody found out about the Winchester Mystery House and decided that a movie should be made about it, and then they wrote a script to try to explain why this house is creepy. If you haven’t been to the house, or you didn’t find it creepy, I suspect this movie does nothing for you, because they certainly didn’t try to make it scary to those of us who don’t find the idea of the Winchester Mystery House scary.

SPOILERS, but who cares?

Imagine if someone continued building additions to her house because she believed that the spirits of the dead killed by the rifles her company manufactures needed a place to live. Ooooh, scary!  That is the premise of this movie.  I suspect an interesting film could have been made about Sarah Winchester, but this movie is more concerned with the idea that weird architecture is spooooooooooooooky. 

Far as I can figure, the plot is completely invented, and a doctor wasn’t assessing er mental state during the San Francisco Earthquake. But the real issue is that there is no rhyme or reason to the haunting. All there is is this idea that she creates rooms for lost souls, and then they find peace. If they don’t find peace she locks them up until they do find peace. We don’t understand how they find peace so there’s nothing for the audience to latch on to. Instead, the solution is just something that the doctor brought with him. It’s never clear as to why.

It’s just not much of anything. It’s not scary and it doesn’t make much sense. It’s clear that this is a just a movie that was made from a “high concept” of a spooky house, and then they wrote a relatively incoherent story around it, hoping that the locations they shot at, and lighting and CGI would somehow make up for the lack of story or scares.

Sure didn’t.


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