ByJames Wood, writer at
Unabashed Transformers fan. Man crush on Tom Hardy. Avid fan of Tommy Wiseau's cult disasterpiece The Room.
James Wood

I would go as far to say that I'd rather watch a film made by Uwe Boll film than sit through this torturous mess. A Haunted House is a self-indulgent and stale spoof of horror hits like Paranormal Activity, The Devil Inside and numerous exorcism films. Marlon Wayans is aggressively unlikeable here, and Essence Atkins is reduced to a screaming presence.

The only gags that made me chuckle involved a house moving van labelled "Your S*!t", and the line from Nick Swardson stating that he has "Powers all over my body", that was it. From then on, through all the headaches, teeth gritting awkwardness and cringeworthy lack of laughter there is just the will to pack up and leave, or simply turn it off. Marlon Wayans describes this film as not a parody but "rather a movie with funny characters doing the opposite of what typical white people do in similar horror films".

He's not even achieved that, the characters are not funny and the actions of the characters do anything but comedic nor memorable. Marlon Wayans screams and giggles at how funny he thinks he is and does nothing more. The characters here don't do the opposite of usual horror situational behaviour, they do exactly what people do in horror movies: Call an exorcist, set up cameras, set out to find out the source of possession, so there's not even a sense of effort trying to be different.

The jokes are longed out to the point of exhaustion, I think I remember a dog dying or something dying early on in the film, and later in the film Marlon Wayan's character Malcolm is still yelling about it as if to extend the gag until it snaps. I mentioned how this film is self-indulgent, Wayans writes everything and anything he thinks its funny, he seemingly acts it out however he wants without thinking if we as the viewer will be entertained by it, and that's how I see it. He gives himself the easy option, the whole film is an easy option out of truly doing something unique in the spoof genre. If only Leslie Nielsen were still alive then this sub-genre would still be running fine.


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