Claire (Stefanie Estes) and her husband, Aaron (Zack Ward), move back into her childhood home and things are looking up. But Claire quickly starts to experience odd sensations, semi-hallucinations and other general oddities.
She’s also having flashbacks to her childhood and her harridan of a mother, played with suitable zeal by Shannen Doherty, who terrorised her as a child.
Aaron is concerned for his wife’s mental health, increasingly so as the incidents and their effects become more intense and dangerous.
As an audience we’re also left wondering what’s going on… well I believe that’s the intention, but it’s pretty telegraphed really. So the surprise, when it comes, isn’t really one and it feels like a cheat.
I think the problem for Bethany is that it draws from a number of influences without differentiating itself or staking a claim to originality.
This is perhaps best illustrated in a shower scene, where Claire starts to pull hair out of the shower, and BOO a scary visage jumps out at her from nowhere – it may not be a direct lift but it certainly is a heavy nod to The Grudge and other J-Horror staples.
The final twist actually has you wondering more about the weird architecture of the home than the family tragedy that has been revealed.
Tom Green is in it too, but I couldn’t for the life of me work out why.
Anthony Cawood is an award-winning and produced screenwriter. He has sold/optioned four feature screenplays, and sold/optioned over forty short scripts, many of which have been filmed. Outside of his extensive screenwriting career, Anthony is also a published short story writer, interviewer and movie reviewer. Links to his films and details of his scripts can be found at www.anthonycawood.co.uk.