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13 Ghosts

13 Ghosts

Director:Steve Beck
Cast:Tony Shalhoub, Shannon Elizabeth
Genre:Film, Horror

By Adele Marley | Posted

During a recent preview screening of 13 Ghosts, an unfabulous remake of a 1960 horror flick of the same name, the film came to an abrupt halt three-quarters of the way through. A shrieking alarm tolled throughout the theater, the lights went up, and confused moviegoers were ushered into the lobby of the vast megaplex. I initially assumed that this was an homage to the great exploitation director William Castle, who helmed the original 13 Ghosts and was notorious for promoting his films with outrageous in-theater publicity stunts. No such luck. The evacuation turned out to be a false alarm set off by a smoke machine in the lobby and completely unrelated in any way to this otherwise yawn-inducing flick. Naturally, this coincidence turned out to be the film's highlight. In this confusing and uninspired update, an impoverished family (including dad Tony Shalhoub, comely daughter Shannon Elizabeth, son/Ritalin candidate JR Bourne, and mouthy nanny Rah Digga) inherits an intricately designed glass mansion from a sinister relative (F. Murray Abraham). It turns out these new digs are haunted by (surprise!) 13 nasty-looking specters--souls captured by the previous owner, who wanted to harness their powers for his own twisted purposes. As the hapless inhabitants try to escape this swirling, FX-tweaked vortex of supernatural activity, you'll want to make a break for it too, fire alarm or no.

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