‘The Apparition’ Review

Published 3 years ago by , Updated November 26th, 2014 at 6:46 pm,

The Apparition Reviews Ashley Greene Sebastian Stan and Tom Felton The Apparition Review

The Apparition is a rare example of filmmaking failure that is so complete, it will exacerbate its audience in nearly every way possible.

In The Apparition, Twilight Saga star Ashley Greene is partnered with Gossip Girl/Captain America star Sebastian Stan as young couple Kelly and Ben, who move into a new suburban wasteland home owned by Kelly’s parents. For a night, everything in the house seems perfect, until doors mysteriously begin opening on their own, furniture starts to move itself, and a sickly, pock-marked mold begins to appear at random in certain rooms.

Kelly is immediately freaked out and ready to run, but objections from Ben and a fear of parental disappointment goad her into remaining in the haunted house. However, as the paranormal events increase in severity, Kelly begins to uncover secrets from Ben’s past that point to a horrifying reality: it isn’t the house that’s haunted, it’s them.

 The Apparition Review

The Apparition is the debut feature-film from writer/director Todd Lincoln, and cinematically speaking, it is a failure on every level. The screenplay is insufferably bad, brimming with horror movie cliches, hilariously bad character decisions and motivations, with dialogue so mundane and cookie-cut that you will be able to call each terrible line out before a character inevitably utters it aloud. The direction is amateurishly cumbersome, with shots, framing and angles that are often distractingly weird or just downright wrong. The editing is just as awkward, lingering too long on certain moments to no effect – or conversely, jump-cutting the audience from one scene/circumstance to another so abruptly and roughly that it is cartoonishly funny. Even the soundtrack is wrong – a strange blend of low-key techno-trance beats and the usual ominous horror movie percussion – often so poorly synched with the visual component that it knocks you right out of the film.

Don’t hope for any help from the pretty young leads, as teen heartthrobs Greene and Stan have the most awkward and dead screen chemistry I’ve seen in a while. The first twenty minutes of The Apparition are enough to establish that this movie is going to be D.O.A. – and not just because of its ghostly antagonist. Kelly and Ben are never a convincing couple in the least, meaning that later on, when they’re so gung-ho about saving one another, it’s hard for the audience to care whether or not they make it through the night at all (some people possibly even praying that they don’t, lest the movie drag on).

Ashley Greene Sebastian Stan and Tom Felton in The Apparition The Apparition Review

Tom Felton, Ashley Greene and Sebastian Stan in ‘The Apparition’

Harry Potter alum Tom Felton shows up to slum it as a mysterious person from Ben’s past, who has specialized scientific ghost knowledge. Felton actually has real talent, and manages to throw himself into the role of “Patrick” with genuine conviction. Unfortunately for Felton, the story’s handling of his character (particularly the needlessly drawn-out introduction) immediately detracts from its effectiveness, while the dialogue Felton is handed (a baffling mixture of science and supernatural geek techno-babble) deep-sixes the performance entirely. In fact, the revelations and narrative exposition provided by Patrick pretty much deep-six the entire film; we are basically getting a mixture of Paranormal Activity, The Grudge and Ghostbusters - only something much, much dumber than any of those films (and with the exception of the latter, that’s really saying something).

As a final insult: The Apparition is yet another case of bait-and-switch movie marketing, with trailers and advertisements that not only reveal every juicy or scary bit of the film (including the ending), they also completely misrepresent the premise. If you were intrigued by the whole “Once you believe, you die,” tagline, don’t be fooled: it has little (to nothing) to do with the plot of the actual movie.

Ashley Greene in The Apparition 2012 The Apparition Review

The Apparition is a rare example of filmmaking failure that is so complete, it will exacerbate its audience in nearly every way possible. It’s not kitschy enough to be ‘so bad it’s good’ fun; the only reason it gets a half-star is due to the one or two instances in which Lincoln is able to stage a creepy or unnerving ghost scare in somewhat creative fashion. But one or two (halfway) successful ideas do not a good horror movie make – especially when we already saw those moments in the trailer.

The Apparition is now playing in theaters, but think long and hard before paying the ticket price (or ever seeing the movie at all). It is rated Rated PG-13 for terror/frightening images and some sensuality.

[SPOILER ALERT: Watch the trailer below and you've seen the entire movie.]

Our Rating:

0.5 out of 5

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  1. LOL.

    Hey Kofi, for reference my current “Worst horror movie ever made” is “Cursed” by Wes Craven. Is it worse THAN THAT?

    • Imagine “Cursed: The Gossip Girl Version.”

      • I you think “Cursed” is the worst horror film ever made i invite you to watch “Axe Em’” and amend your list.

      • “Imagine “Cursed: The Gossip Girl Version.””

        That actually sounds QUITE horrific. :)

      • Cursed was OK. Worst recent horror I’ve seen is John Carpenter’s The Ward.

  2. I have no plans to see this movie even more now. But fun fact this was filmed two streets away from my house.

    Sebastian Stan is a cool down to earth dude. Ashley Greene seemed like holly wood got to her plus she smokes. Anyway well written review kofi thanks for it!

    • Your comment, “Ashley Greene seemed like holly wood got to her plus she smokes”. A bit unfair on miss Greene?

      • It’s an opinion, how can it be unfair?

        • thnks ink. Just a opinion. I’m not a fan of smokers and she seemed unpleasant what else is there. Itsvthe fairest impression she gave me of herself.

          • So you’re saying, anyone who smokes is automatically someone you don’t like? Bit judgemental don’t you think?

  3. Im tired of ghost and demon movies, theyre just an excuse for cheap visual effect(paranomal activity) or whacky cg visuals(pick any…)
    If your not gonna do something inventive like “cabin in the woods” or something fun like “zombieland” then just make a good monster movie.

    I want monsters to come back. Establish that something is real and out to murder you and place it in a decent story and perhaps make it represent something or just make up a new gruesome one altogether…2010s wolfman wouldve been a good start.

    Course godzilla king of monsters is going to make his return soon..

  4. Aw, but it’s ashley greene :(

    She’s worth a redbox, at least. I’ll wait.

    Oh well!

  5. Nice review Kofi. Although if the first sentance included “PG13″ movie i may have saved the time reading it, perhpas thats why you didn’t mention it :)

  6. Wow! I’ve never seen a movie get half a star before!

  7. Funniest and realist review I’ve read in a long time. I was intrigued after seeing the trailer i few weeks ago but I’m glad i didn’t waste my money.

  8. LOL. Funniest review I’ve seen since the Green Lantern review. I knew this was gonna be a good review, bc the review descriptions on SR are usually “read to find out if blah blah is worth the time and money” and this one was all “read this review to find out how bad this film sucks”. LOl.

  9. Half a star seems high

    • Is it possible to give negative stars? :-P

      • That happens when you watch it and want your money/time back.

  10. Well, I don’t understand; is it worth seeing? Come on Kofi, don’t beat around the bush. :-D

    Man, this looks like a real turd. I was thinking about seeing it one day, but that’s been crushed; I doubt if I’d see it if it came out on Showtime. Looks like 2016 this weekend for me.

    • Any film that gets 0% on Rotten Tomatos is worth seeing, from i’m hearing the audiences are heckling it while watching, perhaps they should have charged extra for audience interaction.

    • Kahless – I wish 2016 was showing near me but it isn’t. Please let me know what you thought.

      • Just came from it. Informative but it’s not going to change anyone’s mind. It really focused on the people behind President Obama and tries to explain why he’s taking the country in a direction that’s different than what the founding fathers envisioned. As a documentary, I would give it 3.5 maybe 4 out of 5. It didn’t delve into his controversial birth nor examine his college transcripts but it did talk about the professors and colleagues he had.

  11. wow, 1/2 star. Have you guys ever given zero?

  12. lol hahaha 0.5 of 5 that is really bad. damn,the trailer has looked so good. let´s hope that – the possesion- is worth to watch.

    • The possession looks freaky as freak.

  13. I think that’s the first 1/2 star I have seen on this site! Wow!

    I think you just rocked the SR community, Kofi! Kudos!

  14. hey kofi,have you watched -v.h.s- it was straight to d.v.d released but i think a 100 times better then this. i would prefer you to watch it,if you haven´t.

  15. “[SPOILER ALERT: Watch the trailer below and you've seen the entire movie.]”

    The ultimate one sentence review right there. Hilarious.

  16. are we talking Troll 2 bad???

  17. “a mysterious person from Ben’s past, who has specialized scientific ghost knowledge”


  18. I laughed out loud (I think the kids say ‘LOL’) when I saw the review score. Oh. Still probably better than the Total Recall remake though.

  19. Hahaha!! I love it when a movie review actually ends up being more entertaining than the movie being reviewed – awesome write-up Kofi.

    I never had any interest in seeing this, and I still don’t. Definitely gonna avoid seeing this one at all costs.

    @Kofi: just cross your fingers that you don’t lose the BoxOfficeBattle from now on… just in case Ben, Rob or Ant decides to make you watch it again!

    • I might have to use my one pass for that… Though you have given me a GREAT ideas about what to do if I win…

  20. All I want to know is does Ashley have a bath/shower scene?

  21. and to think you guys have had that annoying pop up ad for this movie on your site for close to a month now, i bet they hate you guys now.i understand the need for the advertisements, and am glad that doesn’t influence your reviews

  22. Wow. Just wow. I almost thought it was a revenge review-like A. Green or T. Felton pissed in your cornflakes or something. But it’s Kofi, right? So gotta respect that the opinion is justified.

    Disappointed that it’s a stinkoid. The trailers and buzz seemed so interesting. They should be punished for making a trailer that is so completely misleading. Someone should put together a conglomeration trailer of all the trailers that belied the stinkocity of the movies.

    Thanks, Kopi. Going to pass on this one (Puts away the grocery money-whew!)

  23. 0.5…. DAMN, Definitely not watching this film

  24. Thanx Kofi, one of the many reasons that make screenrant the best movie/tv show review site on the net and wow 0.5 I’ve never seen that before. o_O

  25. Whoa lower than a 1 0_0 mindblowingly bad this movie must be

    • Shakasha-You got me! Great comment, great article, great balls of fire I’m sick of the obscenely bad crap vying for my 24 dollars.

    • I’m glad I read your entire post because the first paragraph nearly prompted me to write a reply about all reviewers not liking this so you must be a troll or something. So far, this movie is universally hated, so no way am I going to waste money on it.

      • Not a SINGLE positive review on RT. Even bad movies will have one review RT can twist into a positive but not this time. It also seems as if critics are avoiding it because 31 total reviewers is very low for opening weekend numbers.

  26. Was it deliberate that the first I saw coming to ScreenRant just now was an ad for this movie? ;)

  27. I work at the movie theaters and I had to clean up the theater and I saw the last 10 minnutes of it…right there it was the most stupid horror movie I ever saw. It wasn’t scary or intense at all!!! The ending was horrible. It was really stupid. I keep repeating myself with stupid but thats what the movie is overall. No climax even with the “scary” music in the background. Don’t waste your money on this!

  28. Wooow. It’s been a while since I’ve commented…but then, I’ve never seen a .5 star rating from Screenrant before. Geez! I was physically cringing as I read this review, lol…and literally trembled with relief that I hadn’t spent any money on it.