The Haunting In Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia – because the paranormal are also expert analysts of the housing market and know how much cheaper Southern living is. Psh, Connecticut, who can afford those prices! No, really though, why the hell wasn’t this just called The Haunting In Georgia? A haunting implies ghosts are involved without the giant blinking lights that highlight “Ghosts” the way our title is written now, and anyway, there isn’t even a connecting plot line between the two. Having The Haunting In Connecticut left in our title is really a pointless act of marketing to make people remember the mediocre film that started this soon to be trilogy (The Haunting In New York is next) of non-interconnecting stories about apparitions and the special people who can make contact with them.
But OK, enough ranting about silly naming, there’s a horror movie behind that name begging to be reviewed!
Starring Chad Michael Murray, Abigail Spencer, Katee Sackhoff, and young Emily Alyn Lind, The Haunting In Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia tells the repetitive story of a group of city dwellers who move into the deserted countryside for a little peace and quiet – until they realize they’ve moved onto haunted ground and their lives are in danger.
Is it just me or are you doomed as a horror film character if you’re seen moving into a new abode during the opening minutes? Especially when it’s a creepy, run-down house that looks like it was built centuries ago, complete with holes in the walls big enough for raccoons to crawl through. Uh, yeah, let’s move into the house that looks visibly haunted, that will totally stop those terrifying visions of your dead mom from popping up time to time.
What it all boils down is this – The Haunting In Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia is literally constructed in the most genre-specific way, being just another spooky haunted house film we’ve seen time and time again. Lisa (Spencer) starts out as the catalyst for all events, suppressing visions of visiting ghosts with numbing medication which follow her when husband Andy (Murray) moves her and her daughter Heidi (Lind) into a historic old house with an unknown past. At the house, Lisa’s darkest fears come true and she witnesses Heidi talking to people who don’t exist, realizing her young daughter may have the same wretched curse which has followed her. Dark forces, a search for redemption, random paranormal encounters - oh you mean every ghost story I’ve ever seen?
Now with the whole haunting theme, you’d think Lisa dealing with her demons would be the most interesting relationship, but I rather found Heidi’s discovery of her “talents” to be much more enthralling. Here we have this little girl who looks like she’s just talking to an imaginary friend named Mr.Gordy (the recurring ghost), yet because of Lisa’s family history, we know it’s something much more. What usually is just innocent creativity, and the want for company, especially from a child alone on a large plot of land, turns into horror.
But that isn’t even the most interesting part for me – it’s that Heidi actually starts to become cognitively aware of her scenario, making comments to her mother about becoming “like her.” This of course sends Lisa into a repressive insanity, knowing what her daughter is experiencing yet wanting to ignore it, but Heidi remains optimistically bewildered the entire time. Emily Alyn Lind absolutely won me over with her adorable Southern drawl and big presence, outplaying her older on-screen family.
The Haunting In Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia only separates itself momentarily from other genre films because a dash of history is thrown into the mix. All the apparitions are from our nation’s slavery era, which explains the country setting, and there are some nice tie-ins with the Underground railroad, but besides that, we’re really not presented anything mind-altering in the way we think about the paranormal genre. Actually, I take that back. There is one scene with Katee Sackhoff’s character (Lisa’s sister) caught in quite the tight predicament after the evil presents itself, but besides that one stand-out scene, director Tom Elkins and writer David Coggeshall stay safely inside the box of stock horror clichés that mediocre horror films always seem to pull from. Ominous outlines, see-through people, characters in disbelief – there’s just nothing enjoyably special about Elkin’s film.
Even with all the Southern hospitality and slavery backstory, The Haunting In Connecticut 2: Ghosts of Georgia is just as tired a haunting film as its predecessor, failing to signify itself as a uniquely entertaining horror experience. Mr. Gordy just can’t stand up to the more vile and watchable ghosts of our time, seeming more like that invisible friend character I mentioned before. One or two scenes out of an hour and forty minutes worth of horror just doesn’t translate into recommendable material.