Thir13en Ghosts (2001) Review

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Nice house, too bad about the people.

Thir13en Ghosts (13 Ghosts) (2001): 4 out of 10: Fantastic set design and creative character (ghost) make-up effects cannot save this deafening, over-edited mess.

The cast ranges from the where is my paycheck crowd (F. Murray Abraham and Tony Shalhoub), to the disappointedly clothed (Shannon Elizabeth about ten years too old to play a virginal teenager and a very cute Embeth Davidtz), and remarkably irritating (Alec Roberts playing a little boy you wish would just die.)

One-upping Alec Matthew Lillard manages the most irritating role he has ever performed, and that’s saying something. Finally, we have female rapper Rah Digger channeling every offensive black maid stereotype and inventing a few new ones. (Come to think of it a black maid is so 1960’s anyone who is anyone has a European au pair.) Yes, the good old black maid stereotype, Digger is apparently channeling Beulah from The Horror of Party Beach She states she ain’t washing no windows (It’s an all-glass house), and for you film historians out there she doesn’t birth no babies either.

On the plus side, the ghosts, etc. are very well done; however, they don’t have nearly enough screen time and look a bit like the cast of Hellraiser is moonlighting. The set design with a large glass house with beautiful Latin writings on the walls is where the movie shines.

I suspect in a haunted house movie it is the ghosts and house that are the real stars. It is a shame that they had to include this plot and these characters. Truth be told it would have been a better movie without them.

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