Allow me to start this review by saying that I am currently a subscriber to Regal Unlimited. For those of you who are unaware, this is a program where I pay about $20 per month and am able to view as many movies in Regal theaters as I want. If I see two movies per month I am already saving money. So far in January I’ve been to the movies five times. Tonight the original plans I had were cancelled, so with nothing to do, and a free movie ticket, I decided to go to the theater and check out the new PG-13 horror film, The Turning.
The Turning follows a young lady called Kate who accepts a new job as a governess for a young girl, Flora, who has lost her parents in a car accident. Along with the little girl, the sprawling gothic estate is inhabited by the property’s caretaker, and the young girls older brother Miles. As time goes by Kate beings to experience freaky things in the estate, and eventually finds out the reason that Flora’s previous nanny suddenly left. It’s another modern day adaptation of the classic horror novella The Turn of the Screw.
This review won’t be particularly long. Suffice it to say I just really didn’t enjoy this movie. My expectations weren’t super high going in, as I peeked at some of the preliminary reviews going around. The recipe for a haunted house movie is rather simple (things like jump scares, shadow people, creepy dolls, squeaky doors), and all of these elements were certainly present in the film. The problem is that it never really got the viewer in a place of fearful tension. It felt like it took a long time for the film to really get off the ground, and the climax and ending (bizarre) were sadly underwhelming. Predictable jump scares and a pretty silly CGI ghost at the end helped the film fall pretty flat for me. The thing I admired most about the film for me was the setting, as the visuals of the dilapidated mansion were spot on and visually appealing.
To sum up, The Turning turned out to be pretty average PG-13 horror fare. The middle schoolers in the audience did their fair share of screaming, but the grown up horror fan will no doubt leave the theater unsatisfied. The best thing about the evening was the drive home from the theater where the local country radio station was playing songs by 70’s and 80’s country icon Anne Murray. The good news is, with my subscription to Regal Unlimited, the only thing I paid for tonight was a medium Hi-C fruit punch.
My score: 3/10
I typically like to end the review with a link to the trailer for the film, but given the circumstances instead I am going to link one of the aforementioned Anne Murray’s hits from 1984: