March 14, 2018 Demon House (Documentary Review)
Documentaries and Found Footage films have for a number of years been two of the many reasons people still watch Horror; whether it is to seek the “true” horror that exists outside of Hollywood’s special effects or to embrace a much more realistic spook than the silver-screen often provides. Whatever the reasons may be, it is easy to see why Demon House – which arrives to select theaters, Digital HD, and VOD on Friday, March 16, 2018, thanks to Freestyle Digital Media – has been a much-anticipated release for Documentary enthusiasts and Ghost Adventures fans alike.
This new, real haunted house Documentary comes from renowned paranormal-investigator, host of Travel Channel’s Ghost Adventures, Zak Bagans. Writer, producer, and host of this project, it comes as no surprise that Bagans would want to expose his findings of a house that holds more than “200 demons,” his biggest investigation in his career to date.
Word of the the Ammons House’s unusual events initially surfaced back in 2014, and since then have built up quite the following; in fact, the house has been reported on by such noteworthy news organizations as USA Today, Fox News, and the Huffington Post. For his documentary, Bagans has undergone an intensive, three-year-long investigation and research project that is finally about to make its chilling, public debut.
In this very tense documentary, Bagans takes us into Gary, Indiana, where some say the Ammons’ House is “The Portal to Hell.” Former residents of this house all detail different accounts of supernatural possession as Bagans’ crew work tirelessly to figure out if the horror stories that surround this house are true, or if this is just a modern urban legend concocted by the small town.
This film does a very good job of distinguishing between facts and the bouts of the supernatural that are very much open to interpretation. As Bagans is well-known for disputing facts over fiction, it becomes quite possible to believe the hype as you keep watching the film; it feels as though this tale could very well be a reality. As such, there is a clear warning for viewers to watch this material at their own risk, a forewarning that Bagans’ has uttered in the past with his most intense paranormal investigations, though this time around is a whole different animal all together.
This is an investigation that goes too far at some points, but at the same time is human in this aspect. In fact, Bagans claims that this investigation has changed his whole life, and it is made quite clear in this documentary why that is. If you were not a firm believer in paranormal activity before, this is one documentary that is bound to turn quite a few doubters into believers.
Some viewers might find long bits of dialogue a bit distracting from the actual, scary premise of the film, however, if you are fans of the Travel Channel series this is completely normal to Bagans’ and his style. It also feels quite real for jump scares and other forms of horror ornamentation to be rather mute at times, as anomalies of this sort are not always going to make themselves apparent like in a real ghost investigation.
Also, remember that this is a Documentary and not a Horror film, so the style and approach to the material herein is inherently different. If viewers can get past the textbook documentary-style vibe it sometimes throws off, then this offering will not present a problem for the overall haunting experience.
Demon House is an intense documentary that many are claiming to be the “the next Amityville,” and they are not wrong. It is the most overwhelmingly real and authentic haunted house documentarian piece currently in American history, and is a must see for Horror and Ghost Adventures fans around the world. Still spooked, CrypticRock give this Zak Bagans’ Demon House 5 out of 5 stars.