BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

29 October 2014
shropshireshropshire

BBC Homepage
»BBC Local
Shropshire
Things to do
People & Places
Nature
History
Religion & Ethics
Arts and Culture
BBC Introducing
TV & Radio

Sites near Shropshire

Birmingham
Black Country
Hereford & Worcester
Stoke

Related BBC Sites

England
 

Contact Us


The Haunted Mansion
15The Haunted Mansion (2004)

updated 12 February 2004
reviewer's rating
2 out of 5
Reviewed by Matthew Leyland


Director
Rob Minkoff
Writer
David Berenbaum
Stars
Eddie Murphy
Terence Stamp
Nathaniel Parker
Marsha Thomason
Wallace Shawn
Jennifer Tilly
Length
86 minutes
Distributor
Buena Vista
Cinema
13 February 2004
Country
USA
Genre
Comedy
Fantasy
Web Links
Official site



Eddie Murphy provides fun for few of the family in The Haunted Mansion, a tepid supernatural comedy based on a Disney theme park ride. The star plays a workaholic estate agent who drags wife and kids to an ancient manor with a tragic past and ghost-filled present. Tiny tots might find some bits too scary, grown-ups will crave suspense, and everyone will lament the lack of laughs. Only the set design shines in this house of hokum.

In fact, marvelling at the mansion's detail is all there is to do for characters and audience alike in the first half of the film. There's no rush to thicken the plot, which eventually centres on lovesick spirit Edward Gracey (Nathaniel Parker) believing that Murphy's missus (Marsha Thomason) is the key to lifting a long-standing curse. In the midst of this, there's the now-familiar sight of Murphy as a flustered father learning to put his brood before business. If the script had served him funnier lines, perhaps the sentiment wouldn't seem so stale.

"TALENTS GO TO WASTE"

Other talents that go to waste include Wallace Shawn as a helpful house servant and Jennifer Tilly, reduced to a special effect as crystal ball-encased gypsy Madame Leota. Then there's baddie butler Terence Stamp, whose zombie performance suggests he's either completely immersed in his character or as bored as the rest of us.

Speaking of zombies, the best sequence features an attack by the living dead, on loan from one of the Mummy movies. But since it's the only time director Rob Minkoff (Stuart Little) gets a real handle on horror, it doesn't fit with the rest of the kiddie-friendly, unspooky spectacle. Elsewhere, the sappy wrap-up conjures memories of the 1999 film The Haunting. This doesn't sink quite as low, but you're still better off staying indoors.

Find out more about "The Haunted Mansion" at
Movie Review Query Engine
The Internet Movie Database


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external websites

line
Top| Films Index | Home
 


  BOLLYWOOD
BBC Shropshire Bollywood news, reviews and galleries
Red bullet point Bollywood film galleries
  FILM SEARCH
BBC Shropshire film search
Red bullet point What to see in Shropshire
  UK TOP FILMS
BBC Shropshire guide to top ten films to watch this month
Red bullet point What to watch this month
  FILM VAULT
BBC Shropshire film vault
Red bullet point Packed full of film reviews



About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy