And a Ghost Shall Follow You Home: Haunted Mansion Movie Reboot

Kindly step all the way in please and make room for everyone. There's no turning back now. Oh what a wonderful first line to a movie don't you think? Well it's the beginning of the Haunted Mansion ride at Disney! Walt Disney had major plans for the first Haunted Mansion of Disneyland. He even considered the idea of putting it at the end of Main Street USA. To think think that the Haunted Mansion could be where the castle is an interesting thought. A dead end idea, but it was pushed back. Walt Disney was never able to see the end results of the Haunted Mansion.

The mansions in Florida and California are quite different. The outsides are somewhat taken care of and that's part of the plan. The California one has a Plantation house with an eerie aura to it. This is because the Haunted Mansion here is located in Louisiana like New Orleans Square. Florida's mansion has a colonial look to with some Dutch Gothic elements since it's located in Liberty Square.

The Disneyland Haunted Mansion

In 2003 The Haunted Mansion movie was released. It starred Eddie Murphy, Nathaniel Parker, and Wallace Shawn. While this movie was okay it lacked what I thought would be a really good Haunted Mansion movie. I love good humor, but this was really geared towards kids at time. And people will say well The Haunted Mansion ride is in Magic Kingdom. Well so is Pirates of the Caribbean and Johnny Depp is not making bad jokes, he is just had a little too much sun. He is more quirky than funny.

The trailer is honestly more scary than the movie. Which I believe is what Disney wanted from this trailer. Why not have a haunted mansion be serious with serious tones with a good story and plot. 
But the slap-stick comedy won out on this movie and I ended up not being scared at all by what would and wouldn't happen. It felt too humorous and that's not good for a movie called the Haunted Mansion. It lacked a good story about the Haunted Mansion and told the story of the realtor instead. Plus, the acting left a lot to be desired. The actors that are well recognized outshine the new ones and it really shows. The characters were terrible as well, some are not even from the ride.
What I think should be done is pretty simple and straight forward:
  • Use only the characters from the ride. There is no reason to have outsiders come in to the Haunted Mansion. There are 999 ghost, but there is room for a thousand.
  • Let it be scary. We have had a cute and lighthearted happy ending movie, now how about a real scary movie?
  • Tell the real story of the bride, Constance, and Master Gracy and the legend of the hatbox ghost.
  • Show how the other ghosts arrived at the mansions.
  • Talk about the hitchhiking ghosts and why are they hitchhiking and where.
  • And reoccurring in my demands, a serious tone with history and facts. Slap-stick is getting old and corrupting. Teach facts and history instead of a lesson on moral.
Walt Disney had envisions that took over 20 years for a solid idea. I look at that movie like it's almost a slap at what he worked so hard on. Why not have a really good story and even use some of the old ideas of the imagineers for the story plot. Point being, with all the remakes Disney is doing this should be one of them. It should be something that makes you want to visit the Haunted Mansion.

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