So here it is, I was eager to watch this film (a first for me) coz I wanted to see Emily Browning (she played Violet Baudelaire from the movie A Series of Unfortunate Events) all grown-up...
The film begins with Anna recounting a dream to her psychiatrist. Since the tragic death of her bedridden mother 10 months ago when the family's beach home exploded, Anna had been admitted to a mental institution to overcome her trauma. She cannot remember what exactly happened that fateful night & her psychiatrist allows her to return for staying at the institution will not help her remember.
Her father, an up-&-coming author, fetches her & they return to their home. She is unhappy when she learns that her father has been dating Rachel Summers, the nurse who was assigned to care for her late mother when she became immobile. She was happy to meet her elder sister, Alex, who also loathes their father's blonde, pretty, neat & girly girlfriend.
Anna begans to experience horrifying ghostly encounters, all seeming to prove that the explosion was no accident & that Rachel is her mother's murderer. After the seemingly accidental death of a friend, Anna & Alex began to research Rachel's past & they begin to believe she is not who she says she is. After a face-off with Rachel & their father's trip to New York, the 2 girls are left to fend for themselves. The truth is revealed &, yes, it is horrifying.
Emily Browning plays Anna perfectly. She has shown potential in the film A Series of Unfortunate Events & that potential is heightened in this film. Arielle Kebbel is very good as the headstrong, loving & brave Alex. I especially like Elizabeth Banks' portrayal of Rachel Summers, she was the menacing "other woman" & she gave me some pretty good scares in the film. The supporting cast did their parts to allow us to focus on the plot rather than poor acting :)
The music was chilling, it really worked me up to a nervous mess before a scare. Creepy strings & bellowing bass notes really brought the film flowing as it proceeded to scare the hell outta me. Good stuff, that's all I can say.
For a 1st horror film that a wimp is eager to see, it was pretty good. I totally approved of the flashback scenes & the built up to the theory of what's going on. The truth was shocking, I gasped in the cinema, it was totally unexpected. Of course, if you're a horror film veteran, your opinion may differ greatly from mine, but I felt it was worth the watch :)