I remembering seeing the TV special and reading the story The Haunting in Connecticut is based on (a family moves into a former mortuary and their son becomes affected by the evil that remains there). The movie was a bit visually creepy at times, but didn’t really leave much of an impression. The sequel, The Haunting in Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia, did not have the wide release the first film did, but it is a much stronger film with more genuine scares.
The Haunting in Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia is now on Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video. Because it was rainy and cold outside, the wind was whistling, and I was home alone I decided, “Hey, let’s watch a scary haunted house movie! Sounds like fun.”
The financially struggling Wyrik family move to a foreclosed upon house that sits on a lot of acreage. Surprisingly, for once, this is a family who are a loving, supportive and tight knit group. Other than a freeloading, but favorite, aunt Joyce and mom Lisa’s need for pills to subdue ghostly visions, the Wyriks seem happy. That of course is about to change. (Has anyone else questioned if only down-on-their-luck families fall prey to mean ghosts? Are there haunted millionaires out there?)
Lisa and Joyce were born with “the veil” and can see spirits like their mother before them. While Joyce thinks of this sight as a gift, Lisa tries to medicate the visions away. Immediately after moving in, the Wyrik’s daughter Heidi starts showing signs of the veil as well. While Joyce is encouraging and tries to take the fear out of it for Heidi, Lisa tries to tell her daughter it’s all in her head and to just ignore it and it will go away. But Heidi is stubborn and she has made a new friend no one else can see, Mr. Gordy. Heidi’s dad Andy is more supportive of Heidi and is willing to believe there may be something more to this invisible Mr. Gordy than Lisa wants to admit. And in a totally unheard of moment of common sense in a horror film, Andy is ready to pack up and get the hell out of dodge asap when he hears a warning from his daughter via the unseen Mr. Gordy.
We are left to wonder if Mr. Gordy is a menacing spirit or if Heidi is right and he’s just a nice man trying to help them. We learn the Wyrik’s house played an important role in history- it was the home of a station master on the Underground Railroad who helped some runaway slaves find their way to freedom until he met a very gruesome end at the hand of a mob. Heidi soon starts to see all sorts of spirits on the property and viewers start fearing for the life of the family’s new dog, Chief. All the spirits have an interest in Heidi and it doesn’t help that she is not one to listen to her parents and insists on wandering off into the woods alone. There are lots of Andy running through the woods shouting “Heidi!” scenes.
As the family faces peril at the hands of a very, very scary determined and powerful ghost, I found myself tensing up and getting really nervous. I found it to be much more intense than the first film. I enjoyed watching Ghosts of Georgia and it was worth the time invested. And now, between us two, it could have been PMS, but I was waterworks type crying at the end of the movie. Even if portrayed in a cheesy horror movie way, there is a serious historical undertone in the movie that may tug at your emotions.
I say give this movie a try; if you can let the faux southern accents slide you might be nicely surprised. It stars Abigail Spencer as Lisa, Chad Michael Murray as Andy, Emily Alyn Lind as Heidi, and nerd crush fave Katee Sackhoff as Aunt Joyce.
If you wish to read about the true (or if you prefer, the supposedly true) story about the Wyrik family this movie is very lightly based on, check it out here.
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