The Sam Raimi-produced rebootquel of his own Evil Dead was well received when it hit theaters earlier this year, earning a healthy chunk of change and respectable reviews from die-hard fans and franchise newbies alike. So we're willing to give the Raimi-produced, Gil Kenan-directed remake of Poltergeist the benefit of the doubt, even if he had nothing to do with the original and isn't as invested in its legacy.
Having said that, some early details about the film have us a little worried, mainly because they seem to not make any sense. Hopefully that last bit means these details aren't true at all and just unfounded rumors. They actually come from two different sources, one that seems somewhat reliable, and one that seems a bit bogus. We'll start with the seemingly reliable stuff first.
Bloody Disgusting is reporting that this new film is about the Bowens, a family who move to a new town after the father loses his job. His daughter is abducted to the other side and the family has to do what they can to get her back. This involves hiring the TV show Haunted House Cleaners and a parapsycholgist to investigate the little girl's disappearance. Oh, and the mom in the family can also communicate with the dead.
That all sounds acceptable to us. It's defnitely a modernization of Poltergeist (though we kind of already got that with Insidious), and that makes sense. What doesn't make sense is the second site claiming to have a scoop. Moviehole.net is reporting that it has a few more details on the film, most of which is just echoing scenes from the original (spooky tree outside and what not), though one section really stands out:
Firstly, the Kenan-directed Raimi-produced reboot – much like the Evil Dead remake – exists in the same world as the previous Poltergeist films. So while it is a "reboot" of the franchise, it’s also somewhat of a sequel – taking place years after the Freeling’s [sic] were ran out of town.
In one scene in the new film, the kids’ [sic] find some things behind the sliding panel in the attic. Yep, you guessed it – they find some of the Freeling’s possessions, intentionally left behind. There’s the Star Wars bed sheets (from Robbie’s room), a black-and-white TV set (why, of course!), and some Christmas decorations.
A fun wink at Tobe Hooper's original movie, sure, but that's the part that has us calling this rumor's bluff. If you'll recall from 1982's Poltergeist, the Freeling's house is sucked into a vortex. It's not just abandoned. It doesn't just collapse to the ground. It implodes on itself and is sucked into a vortex to another dimension. There's no attic left to leave anything. Unless the movie opens with the house being transported back in from the vortex and being rebuilt, having the Bowens move into the Freeling's house doesn't make any sense.
We're not going to let ourselves get too worked up over this details just yet, though. Moviehole could most definitely have its details wrong. So could Bloody Disgusting. If not, well, it's a shame that Hollywood feels it needs to trade in nostalgia without exercising even basic respect for the original story it's supposedly honoring.