I have just watched the first two episodes of the Netflix TV adaptation of Shirley Jackson’s THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE. Oh my God, I have NEVER EVER been so utterly bored and irritated by a show in my life!
I actually thought that this series was so bad that it should NEVER have been made, as it does NOT, in ANY way, do Jackson’s brilliant novel any justice at all. In fact, to be perfectly blunt, it is just utter rubbish. Not a patch on the original 1963 movie, THE HAUNTING, either. And for that matter, even the 1999 remake, which starred Catherine Zeta Jones and which, for me, wasn’t as good as the first movie, was better than this lacklustre series.
Both the 1959 novel and the 1963 movie were just brilliant, undeniable classic examples of how a really good, gripping, scary haunted house story should be presented. However, this TV series bore scant resemblance to either, and was just one big confusing mess. I just CANNOT, for the life of me, understand why so many raved over this series. For me, it does absolutely NOTHING for the haunted house genre, and I would even go as far as to say that it is an insult to Shirley Jackson’s original classic (and if you have read that novel, then you will certainly know what I mean). The Shirley Jackson novel aside, this series didn’t even give much indication that it was a proper haunted house story, as it seemed to place more emphasis on ponderous character interactions and history – and to such an interminable extent too – rather than on any real supernatural elements.
You know, I had been expecting so much from this series, especially after hearing all the hype about it and being such a big fan of Jackson’s story. However, I don’t think I will be watching any more of this piece of garbage. Not only is it mind-numbingly boring and dull, but it is also a complete and utter jumble of infuriating flashbacks, puzzling scenarios and over-lengthy character dialogue. It is not scary, it is not gripping, and it certainly is not a series I would recommend to any fan of paranormal movies. A proper haunted house series this is NOT.
Avoid this series like the plague. Trust me, you will be very glad that you did.