The Haunting of Molly Hartley

Posted in Movies on November 5th, 2008 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Even though our car is out of commission, we were still able to get out to vote yesterday with our rental car, courtesy of our car warranty.  I have to say that after years of driving a loaded mini-van, I kind of enjoy zipping around in the little Malibu they gave us.  My husband pointed out that it’s probably because all the kids won’t even fit in it, so for the first time in a long time, I find myself alone in the car, which means blaring country music of my choosing rather than listening to kids fighting, KidsSongs, or Veggie Tales.  He’s probably right; although I do enjoy the quick pick-up and the fact that I can easily back out from any parking spot I find myself wedged into.  So anyway, the movie theater in the neighboring town was offering free popcorn to those who voted in the election yesterday.  They had a movie called, “The Haunting of Molly Hartley“, which I hadn’t heard about.  But the title sounded promising, as did the fact that the movie came out on Halloween.  But then I looked it up on imdb.com, and it had a 3.8 rating.  Ouch – that’s a pretty stinky rating!  Not only that, but examples of users’ comments on the movie include:  “What’s the point of this movie?”  “Don’t worry about getting up for a snack, you won’t miss anything.”  “A fright fest without the scares.”  “Reminds me a of a Nickleodeon movie.” – you get the idea.

But we decided to see it anyway, and I’m glad we did.  It really wasn’t that bad – it even has replay value; I’d watch it again.  The plot centers around a young girl named Molly who, days before her 18th birthday, begins to have episodes characterized by nosebleeds, anxiety attacks, and hearing voices.  She is really worried that she is “going crazy”, especially given her mother’s mental instability.  The audience doesn’t really know if everything is just in this girl’s head because of past trauma or if there is really more to it.  I would describe the movie as Rosemary’s Baby meets Proof (I’ve only seen the stage play, not the movie though).  In Rosemary’s Baby, a woman is having a baby and is paranoid that her neighbors are demons who will harm the baby.  The movie is done in such a way that the audience is left guessing the entire time if she’s just being paranoid or if her concerns are legit.  And Proof is the story of a woman who is following in the footsteps of her mathmatical genius father, only to worry if she is also inheriting his mental illness.

And I disagree with some of the comments made about the Haunting of Molly Hartley – there were plenty of scares.  The movie had a creepy mood to it, and there were plenty of jump-out-of-your-seat startles.  They were quite predictable, but I’ve seen lots of scary movies, so the predictability of the scares probably had lots to do with my experience of knowing when to expect them.  Overall, I’d definitely recommend this movie to people who like horror movies.  I liked it much better than Saw V, and they’re really two different types of movie since unlike the entire Saw franchise, this one had no gore and was rated PG-13.  Apparently it was too tame and lame for teenagers, which scares me to think about what it must take to shock teenagers these days.  But for grown-up thrill movie fans, it’s worth a view!