I keep watching and reading and otherwise allowing these stories of possessions and hauntings into my life, mostly because the intrusion of the creepy into everyday life is the only thing that even remotely works for me in terms of scariness anymore - slasher movies have always been pretty dumb & dull, accomplishing nothing; even Rob Zombie's efforts in past years have been more shockfest than frightfest. I don't mind a good horror flick, but it needs to do something else while being scary, and it needs to do it with something besides just gore. The Walking Dead was filling this niche for me for the first three seasons, but then I gave up on it because I felt that it had no place else to go except for nihilistic examinations of the fracturing of personal relationships under pressure and the inevitable deathwatch that accompanies zombie films, which in this case, could go on for years. Fuck it - that's not something I need.
Anyway, I watched the left-pictured thing. It was on Netflix, so there was no additional out-of-pocket, it was only 90 minutes long, and it featured no credits, which accentuated the "found footage" feeling quite nicely. Having covered everything the film has going for it, we can now get into the troubles it has, which are numerous.
I watched this, primarily, because of state pride. One of the things every Tennessean knows about Tennessee is that we have our own witch/ghost. Much in the same way that Ed Gein & Henry Lee Lucas are the roots of every serial killer / cannibal / drifter with a knife murder story you've ever seen or heard, The Bell Witch is the source for most of these haunting / possession / poltergeists stories. But this thing sucks. I can't recommend this film - it's awful. The continuity is fucked, the characters are stock cookie-cutter people who don't react like normal people to the events in their lives (What about watching the footage? You're really going to let your kids go into the woods where your friends got their faces ripped off last weekend?) there are pool parties and palm trees in Tennessee in January - the list goes on and on. I actually began to create a film within the film while watching - the same unfortunate police officer keeps getting called to their neighborhood - he responds to the aforementioned faces ripped off, a hanged teenage girl, another teenage girl eating a raccoon, raw, in a drainpipe, the dad of the family seizing and burping up bloody poo things, and so on. Eventually, this fucking guy hands in his resignation, or at bare minimum, a request for transfer. "GET OUT." Yes, good, fine, I'm going.
This raises the perspective question, though: Why do ghosts and restless spirits handle shit they way they do in movies? First off, Casper, youse can manipulate lights, electricity, iPods, furniture, door handles and physical objects, yeah? Including making shit float through the air? Instead of scaring the shit out of people, then, why not just explode the dad's head (because he's always the one who doesn't want to leave) and write GET A REALTOR in brains on the dining room wall? Why mess around? And don't do the shit at midnight when everybody's sleeping, either. Fuck that - 7:45pm during everyone's favorite show. Just interrupt the feed - "Hey, I'm the restless phantom in your house; listen, fuck off, or I'll murder the cat and staple it to your ass. Cool? Cool." Results, is what I'm saying.
Secondly, when it comes to the level of violence, how many people can you justify, evil spirit? Okay, I get being mad at your family who done you wrong and maybe some of their descendants, but priests and postmen? Friends of friends? How many people do you get to just solidly fucking murder to balance your internal triple-beam, ghost? What is the actual plan, here, anyway? Are we possessing and murdering, or are we driving people out? If what you really want is the Garbo treatment, just rip the goddamn house down. Nothing discourages new tenants like an absence of domicile. Again: you can move chairs and shit, you can operate saws, drills, screwdrivers and small explosives. Fuck the house.
Yeah, just don't watch these movies at all. They make no sense.