When I saw the first images that were released for this horror film, I full on fan girl-ed at the fact that Helen Mirren was going to star in a scary movie. As a self professed lover of the Red film franchise, I knew that Helen Mirren was a full on bad-ass so I was anxious to see how she would adapt to the role of Sarah Winchester.
Winchester opens to Dr Eric Price being summoned to Winchester manor to mentally assess the widow Sarah Winchester. The caller is a high end employee of the Winchester company and he believes Sarah Winchester, due to her grief, is unable to hold her shares of the company. He sends the doctor to Winchester manor to meet Sarah Winchester. Upon his arrival, he discovers that the mansion – originally a house with eight rooms – is a giant manor under 24/7 construction. During his stay at the Winchester manor, Dr Eric Price learns that his near death experience warranted him abilities to see the dead that flock to this ever-expanding home. However, the problem is that some of these ghosts are angry. With her family in danger, Sarah Winchester needs the help pf Dr Eric Price to stop a ghost from enacting their revenge.
Prior to watching this film, I read a few short reviews just to see what the general consensus was. Most of what I read was negative, stating the movie was boring and bland but I came to the opposite conclusion. I thought that the premise was intriguing enough and I thoroughly enjoyed the performance by Helen Mirren. The movie was a bit predictable at times but I didn’t mind. The jump scares and ghosts being trapped reminded me of the film 13 Ghosts, which is a compliment in my book.
The one issue I have with the film is its handling of the message. I understand that gun control is a hot button issue but I think more could have been done. One would assume that being constantly tormented by the ghosts of people that had been shot would be a very active advocate for gun control to ensure the number of ghosts that end up at your home is as minimal as possible. But instead, Sarah Winchester hides in her home, dealing with all the ghosts that show up there.
Winchester is an entertaining ride, although pretty shallow at best.