Rose Red

I know this is a made-for-TV movie and I said I would review those tomorrow, but if I don’t review this now it is going to be stuck in my head all night. This will also be the ONLY MOVIE I do not post more pictures than just the movie poster (I’ll explain in the “Other Things” part below).

I also won’t be putting numerical scores by the plot, acting, and directing categories in just this post. Again, I’ll explain why at the end.

Plot: NA/5
Official Plot Description:
A group of people with psychic powers are invited to awake the sleeping giant that is Rose Red. But as their stay grows longer, they find that not only have they awoken Rose Red, they’ve unleashed a power that will doom them all…

Ok, that isn’t the best description of what the movie is about. Let me try to clarify. A professor of psychology, Dr. Joyce Reardon (Nancy Travis), takes a group of people with psychic powers into a mansion known as Rose Red. The home has been abandoned for many generations, but it is still owned by the family of Steve Rimbauer (Matt Keeslar), who is the boyfriend of the professor. The purpose of this experiment is to try and awake the rumored spirits who inhabit Rose Red, and to prove the existence of Ghosts once and for all using high-tech equipment and censors.

Among those on this trip are Annie Wheaton (Kimberly J. Brown) and her big sister and caretaker Rachel Wheaton. Annie is a severely autistic girl who has shown evidence of psychic powers.

As night falls in the manor strange things begin to happen. People see spirits and some go missing in the dead of night. When dawn comes these horrors do not stop. More die, and the Professor must choose between her beloved life’s work and her very life as the spirits are unleashed.

Acting: NA/5
I don’t have much to say here. Nothing stood out as particularly good or bad in this movie, at least not that I remember. Rose Red is your basic sci-fi flick. The acting is nothing award-winning, and most people who have seen this film probably don’t remember it unless reminded specifically.

Directing: NA/5
Again, nothing really stood out. There are some cool shots that will give you the shivers (such as when the psychic wakes up and the ghost is in bed with him), but other than shock effect the movie doesn’t bring anything new to the table.

Other Things
Ok, now I’ll reveal my secret, and why I did not put extra pictures in this review or give anything a numerical rating: I haven’t seen it since it aired in 2002. Let me explain why:

This movie was released as a 3 night mini series. I was 11 at the time and wanted to watch it with my parents, since the trailer looked really cool and all that jazz. After the first night I was spooked. Nothing particularly frightening happened, but there is a strong air of suspense over the whole movie. After the second night I was terrified, but if I stopped watching then I would only be more scared. After the third night I was glad it was over to say the least.

This sounds childish, but please remember I was 11. For a year after watching that movie I had nightmares. For 4 years I was afraid of the dark. For 6 years I couldn’t sleep on my side on a bed (due to that cool scene with the ghost I mentioned earlier). To this day (8 years after seeing this) I can’t sleep with a closet door even a crack open.

This movie scared the life out of me. I was not an easily scared child, I can name only 2 movies that ever freaked me out, and one just scared me for a couple of months. This movie scared me more than any movie has before or since. My parents didn’t think much of it, but the character design was completely perfect and terrifying.

To this day there are 3 scenes I think will frighten even the best of you:

1) The Ghost
While the psychic is asleep on his side he feels something. The blankets move slightly. He wakes and turns over to see the ghost of Actress Deanna Petrie lying on the bed with him. She pulls him closer and whispers in his ear that she wants him. Why did this scare me? THE GHOST IS MORE LIKE A ZOMBIE. She is mostly skeleton with skin hanging off. THIS IS WHAT TERRIFIED ME THE MOST IN THE ENTIRE MOVIE! Seriously, she was scary as shit to 11 year old me!

2) The Eye
Annie and her sister are sleeping soundly when a blue floating light comes in the room (the spirit of April Rimbauer). Annie wakes and follows the light around. Her sister wakes suddenly and doesn’t see her. She turns on the light and looks around for the girl, finding her under the bed with her eyes wide open. They go back to sleep and the sister asks why she opened the closet door, saying “you know i’m afraid of the boogiman”. They turn off the light and go back to sleep. you see a zoom-in on the gap in the closet door, where a rotting eyeball is watching them now. SCARY AS SHIT!

3) The Hanging Man
In the first part you see Kevin Bolinger, a reporter for the university where Joyce Reardon works. He was instructed by the president of this university to follow her and mess with her experiments in an effort to discredit the crack-pot Professor. In the first episode he vanishes, abducted by some horrifying apparition you don’t actually see (thank. god.). In the 3rd part you see his ghost wandering maliciously. That wasn’t bad. In the end you see his body in the circle library (which has a solid mirror floor). He is hanging from the chandelier in the center of the room- totally blue- holding a sign that says “Mommie, I’m scared”. THAT FREAKED THE CRAP OUT OF ME.

So I refuse to watch this movie ever again. Or even look at a trailer for it. It scared the crap out of me to such a degree that even now my parents make jokes. I’m fine now (except for the closet thing), but even telling people about this film gives me shivers. As a joke I bought the DVD for $10 at Wal-Mart and gave it to a friend for christmas who had made fun of me. He only watched the movie when the sun was out, and it even freaked him out a little.

In short: be amazed I even found a trailer for it. I guarantee you I didn’t watch it, and I have no plans to ever do so.

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