The Uninvited (2009)

the uninvited poster 2009 movie
6.5 Overall Score
Story: 6/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 6/10

Decent cast

Dull remake of an interesting movie, dumbs down the story

Movie Info

Movie Name:  The Uninvited

Studio:  DreamWorks

Genre(s):  Horror

Release Date(s):  January 30, 2009

MPAA Rating:  PG-13

the uninvited sisters anna alexa emily browning arielle kebbel

Oh gawd….I hate everyone

Anna (Emily Browning) has returned home from the institution but finding coming home is harder than she thought.  Learning from her sister Alex (Arielle Kebbel) that her father (David Strathaim) has all but forgotten their deceased mother (Maya Massar), Anna finds it hard to get along with Rachel (Elizabeth Banks) who has invaded the home.  Anna and Alex realize that Rachel has a secret and the accident that killed their mother might not have been an accident at all.

Directed by the Guard Brothers, The Uninvited is a horror thriller.  The movie is an adaptation of the 2003 South Korean film A Tale of Two Sisters.  The film received negative to average reviews.

The Uninvited came out with a ton of other generic horror films with similar titles.  Watching A Tale of Two Sisters, I was interested in the remake…unfortunately, The Uninvited got rid of most of what made A Tale of Two Sisters unique.  A ******spoiler alert****** exists for the rest of the review.

uninvited dead mother

Dead mothers don’t nag

A Tale of Two Sisters was kind of predictable in that you knew the sister was dead…what was interesting is that the character also created a side character to deal with her trauma (and make the villain).  The Uninvited eliminates this side character and puts the Rachel character as a simple victim of Anna’s delusions.  In this telling, Anna is the actual “villain” the whole time…even before the accident.  It just isn’t as original and it isn’t surprising.

The cast really can’t be faulted.  As in Sucker Punch, Emily Browning is good at playing the damaged girl and Arielle Kebbel also feels like a real, jaded teen.  David Strathaim (like the father in the original film) is largely absent, but Elizabeth Banks isn’t as good of a villain as the evil stepmother from the original film.

uninvited ghost girl

Wait…am I the Uninvited?

The movie also looks a bit too polished.  The location is pretty, the girls are pretty, and everything is pretty.  There needed to be more darkness and building terror to the story.  If they were going to make it ghostly, they needed to be do more with the haunting.  The atmosphere needs to be darker (especially with the warped persona of the characters).

The movie just doesn’t equal the film of which it is based.  This isn’t entirely unexpected, but what is odd about The Uninvited is that the plot was dumbed down so immensely…usually the opposite is true where it is made overly complex.  I kept waiting for another twist, but it never really felt like it came.  The Uninvited feels a bit more The Uninspired.

Related Links:

A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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