Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

I vaguely remember the first 'House on Haunted Hill', or at shall I say the remake of the fist film which originally starred Vincent Price back in the fifties. So when a movie takes 8 years before they scrape up a DTV sequel, apparently a bunch of people 'vaguely' remember the first movie. The good thing about this Direct to Video sequel of a theatrically released film is that it's a semi-real sequel as opposed to some movie somebody made and then calling it 'Something or Another II'. What is up for debate however is how this good this movie actually is, and if you have a little over seventy minutes to waste and have a tolerance for extreme brutality, you may dig this movie.

So if I am to remember correctly Ali Larter who played Sarah in the first film was the Final Girl.  Now Sarah has become a loon, completely obsessed with the house and the horror that happened inside. She's been trying to convince her sister Ariel (Amanda Righetti) of this for years but she's not trying to hear that nonsense. Tragically when Amanda gets the call that Sarah has killed herself, she begins to wish she wasn't such as crappy sister. But then again, perhaps Sarah didn't kill herself. What had happened was that she found out that there is some ancient relic in the house that makes it all evil and she knows how to reach it. However that relic is worth a few million bucks and having possession of this knowledge is what got her killed by the evil Desmond (Eric Palladino) and his crew of artifact hunting mercenaries. So it seems to me that it's fairly stupid to kill the one who knows where the artifact is on the off chance that she may send the secret map to her estranged sister, but by golly that's exactly what happens.

So our criminals grab the busty sister sporting a tank top two sizes two small with tight jeans accentuating her badonk, and her boyfriend Paul (Tom Riley), and drag them to the house to find the artifact. Also at the house is professor Richard from the local U who has been looking for the damn thing for like forever, and he's brought his graduate assistants Kyle (Andrew Lee Potts) and Michelle (Cerrina Vincent) who has an even

bigger set of breasts a tighter T-shirt and a bigger ass than Ariel. Well once in the house horrible things start to happen to the crew such as a dude getting drawn and quartered, a doctor cutting off somebodies face, a fridge dropping on a skull and other horrific little nasties, including a little lesbian threesome between two rotting ghouls and one of our mercs who by chance happens to be yet another breastful, tight t-shirt wearing female. Well being how this is survival horror we know already that not many are going to make it, leaving our hero girl to find the statue, destroy it and save the day. Can she do it? I'm not betting against the tightness of those jeans, that's for damn sure.

The reason I'm kind of down with 'Return to the House on Haunted Hill' is that I appreciate that director Victor Garcia had the good sense to realize that he wasn't painting the Sistine Chapel here. I imagine the budget was probably around a pretty low, so he hired some functional male actors, threw a few bucks Jeffrey Combs way because we all know he has no conscious, and hired if not the most classically beautiful actresses he could find, certainly the actresses with the best figures, and I can't be mad at that. Some of the imagery in this film is actually fairly jolting and if you're not jaded as I am, it might actually give you a scare or two. For you gore hounds out there there's some pretty graphic stuff to see that will be thrown your way. The narrative is choppy and of course is loaded with plot holes galore, but again, this film runs a brisk seventy-five minutes so there wasn't a hell of a lot of time for exposition. But just because a movie is brief doesn't meant that it can't find a way to be dull and I'm pleased to say that 'Return to the House on Haunted Hill' is never that. No there's nothing new here that you haven't seen over and over again, nothing particularly fresh or innovative, but I thought it was solidly entertaining and still left me plenty of time for my afternoon tea. On further thought a lesbian threesome that includes two rotting slimy ghouls, who amazingly still have young firm breasts, just MAY be somewhat innovative.

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