The Spierig brothers (Predestination) make a crackerjack of a ghost story here that even within the clichés of the genre stands as a solid horror entry. Helen Mirren gives a solid turn though its too bad Sarah Snook is ill used after her masterful turn in the brothers 'Predestination'. Jason Clarke is pretty awful here but he's pretty awful in everything isn't he?
A good central concept lost in a sterilized maze of hokey jump scares, too much exposition, a lack of dramatic/horrific urgency, and an attempt for an emotional ending from a husband/wife relationship that's only eluded to in expository conversation but is never actually seen in action until then. Mirren's acting seems to be in-tune to her character's gun-control guilt despite Clarke's large passiveness.
Just the very idea of the Winchester Mystery House inspires a great deal of mystery. The Spierig Brothers' film, on the other hand, conjures up familiar demons in the form of tedium and generic haunted house thrills. "Winchester" begins as a modestly intriguing look into the aesthetically unique architectural marvel that is the aforementioned mansion until it dissolves into a trite, cliche-ridden supernatural film.
An interesting effort whose sum isn't quite as interesting as its parts. Some great moments, great ideas, and passable performances don't quite congeal to create something unified and wholly interesting. The genre clichés and countless jump-scare attempts didn't help, either. Loved the production design, though it felt too glossy at times - not enough texture.
It's bad. Writing is bad, editing is even worse. Makes me sad everytime I watch Helen Mirren try to do acting like the film is worthed enough. Clarke is the worst, he's a miscast, imo. His flat acting was amplified when in a movie about ghosts, he's playing a guy who doesn't get scared because he believes all the jumpscares are just his drugs working.
just like The Purge films, there is a great film to be extracted out of this concept. and just like the purge films it is nowhere to be seen. are the Spierig brothers sure they are tackling horror? or just like another pair of filmmaking brothers, they are crafting spoofs?