Haunted Mansion Movie Explained: What’s Up With the Ending?

This is not the first time Disney has turned attractions from its parks into feature-length films. It was thanks to this decision that “Pirates of the Caribbean” appeared, which grew into a separate film franchise. In 2003, Disney tried something similar with A Haunted Mansion and released a movie of the same name starring Eddie Murphy. It wasn’t a hit back then, but over the years, audiences and critics have softened towards it. Moreover, it softened enough that Disney eventually started thinking about a remake. That’s why the new “Haunted House” was released in 2023. We’ll tell you in the review below how the film turned out.

Pros: excellent cast, which at times shows their talents in bright images; high-quality special effects that complement the overall atmosphere Cons: an incoherent script that cannot competently bring to a conclusion even relatively simple storylines; local actors are not allowed to express themselves fully; blandness of ideas and the whole plot

Haunted Mansion

Genre Comedy Horror
Directed by Justin Simien
Starring: Rosario Dawson, LaKeith Stanfield, Tiffany Haddish, Owen Wilson, Danny DeVito, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jared Leto, Chase Dillon
Premiere cinemas
Release year 2023
IMDb website

Single mother Gabby (Rosario Dawson) and her nine-year-old son Travis (Chase Dillon) move into the old estate to try to start a new life here. But it quickly becomes clear that it is almost impossible to live here due to the abundance of ghosts. To get rid of them, the family turns to extremely extravagant people for help, who together form a very unusual exorcism team.

Let’s say right away that the only external stylistic elements here are from horror, that is, the ghosts themselves and their tricks. No one is trying to unnecessarily scare you here; after all, the film is rated PG-13, so even children (accompanied by their parents) can watch it. Therefore, it’s not worth going to the cinema to see “The Haunted House” for an attraction for your nerves – there’s simply nothing like that here.

Instead, the film tries to attract a galaxy of bright and charismatic actors, for whom they also came up with interesting and eccentric images. A separate film could be made about almost each of them. The problem is that the script doesn’t allow them to fully express themselves.

The stars of “A Haunted House” seem to be very close to the concept of the film. Outside of a few scenes and a couple of sentences, it is impossible to say that at least someone realizes their potential to the maximum.

The chemistry between the characters also does not add up to a cohesive whole. Because of this, sometimes when watching it it seems that you are watching a collection of humorous sketches. Which are not the worst in themselves, but do not connect into a single whole.

At the same time, they are trying to straightforwardly impose on you the ideas of family values, which were also about in “The Haunted House” of 2003. But in the old version it turned out to be more sincere and appropriate. The remake feels too intrusive in its attempts to make you kinder and more tolerant of your loved ones. Because of this, generally good ideas may never take root in the minds of viewers.

The structure of the script is also shaky. The story tries to juggle multiple plots and timelines at once, but ultimately fails to bring any of them to a satisfying climax. There are enough events in the film, but sometimes while watching you forget how and why everything is needed. And this is far from a compliment to the scriptwriters.

But who did their best was the special effects and computer graphics department.

The Haunted House looks great. The local effects don’t impress with pathos, but they are creative and conceptually complement the overall atmosphere of the story. So the eyes of the audience will definitely find something to admire.

It’s a shame that A Haunted House doesn’t have much to offer beyond its visual beauty. It’s effective and intriguing, but it’s an empty film that doesn’t even come close to filling the 2003 version.

I feel sorry for all the local talented actors who had to participate in the creation of something so superficial and unprincipled. However, Disney, with its money, can definitely afford something like this.

The first part of “Pirates of the Caribbean” managed to turn the attractions from the Disney parks into an exciting story full of intrigue and powerful moments. The new Haunted Mansion is just as much of an attraction as the original. Vibrant and exciting, but rather fleeting. This is entertainment “in the moment”, leaving nothing valuable behind. As an option for unobtrusive leisure time, it will do just fine. But nothing more.


The new “Haunted House” evokes a strong desire to revisit the old version without incredible special effects, but with mood and high-quality implementation. Remakes are supposed to improve on the original or open it up to new audiences, but 2023’s A Haunted Mansion fails miserably at that—and no amount of excuses will help.

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