October Challenge #1: The Haunting of Helena

haunting-of-helena-face I'm running a bit behind, but I'm still watching one horror movie for every day of October this year.

Me and my girlfriend started out with The Haunting of Helena, a horror flick that takes place in Italy for some reason. Some of the plots points are tied to historical events, but there really is no point to it actually taking place there. Everyone speaks English (except for a psychologist guy who was dubbed) and everyone acts like they're in the US, so whatever.

The-Haunting-of-Helena-Theatrical-Poster1Anyway, IMDB says ''A single mother moves into a new house with her daughter. Soon after the young girl has her first baby tooth fall off, she begins to recount that she is having nocturnal visits by a tooth fairy. It seems the house has a sinister history'' which sounds about right. The irresponsible dad isn't in the picture because he's roaming the world. The mom likes to overreact at everything, like when an elderly neighbor says hello and asks if she's the mom of the little girl that lives in the building. She looks at him like he's the boogeyman. He eventually does turn creepy when he says ''GET OUT WHILE YOU STILL CAN'', but I wasn't sure why the mom was creeped out from the get-go. Then the kid loses a tooth and it disappears because the tooth fairy took it. Eventually the mom is called to the school because apparently her daughter was buying teeth from the other children. I have to say two things about that:

1. That's actually a pretty neat idea for a short story.

2. Why the fuck would a teacher care if a kid is buying up baby teeth? Kids will trade fucking everything, including teeth, cat skulls, Pokemon cards and dead pigeons. This isn't cause for alarm.

Anyway, the mom is really disturbed and takes her to a psychologist and she gets like a hundred CAT scans. Her dad calls and thinks it might be epilepsy (that's not how epilepsy works) but eventually the mom sees the ghost! Shit goes downhill from there. Spoilers follow, including THE ENDING. Mark the text to read them.

Turns out the woman that used to live in the house had a really jealous husband. He got really angry and pulled out all her teeth and left her to die in a closet. Now the lady haunts the house and is trying to get her teeth back.There's a huge jump in time after the mom and daughter escape the house and the ghost. The kid is in a mental institution and finally the dad has shown up. He's an asshole and wants to take the kid back to the US. It took him four years to come see his daughter, two of which she was in the institution. Talk about a shitty dad.

The mom figures out that the lady ghost wants her teeth back and does some research to find them. She eventually does (it really wasn't that hard) and goes back to the house to drop them off. That's when the plot twist ala The Ring happens. Turns out the lady wasn't the victim of a jealous husband, she was a fucking cannibal that murdered kids. Her husband found out and took her teeth out to save the town kids. Now the ghost lady had her teeth back, she was free to eat kids again, which she does immediately. All in all a happy ending.

Anyway, this movie wasn't terrible, I liked some of the effects and some of the ideas behind it. It's a perfectly passable b-movie with mediocre acting but decent CGI effects. The plot twist is kinda apparent but it takes so long to happen that you're almost fooled, but I can't give it too many points for that.

 2 out of 5 baby teeth