Poltergeist Trailer: What's New For The Reboot?

Mike P Williams

The first trailer for Gil Kenan’s ‘Poltergeist’ remake has landed, but is it simply a shot-for-shot rehash, or does it offer something different?

Different Strokes

The changes since the 1982 original include director Kenan replacing Tobe Hooper and horror maestro Sam Raimi producing instead of Steven Spielberg. 

The new casting, in place of the excellent family trio of Craig T. Nelson, JoBeth Williams and Heather O’Rourke (the young girl who’s abducted by the entity), consists of Sam Rockwell, Rosemarie DeWitt and Kennedi Clements, and the two brothers also remain. But now they’re known as the Bowens, rather than the Freelings.

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Aside from being set in modern day America (as we deduce from the iPhone usage), the style and indeed a lot of the shots feel familiar to the original. he big moments still seem to be there, but that’s not to say there won’t be a few surprises.

So, is ‘Poltergeist’ 2015 going to be anything different to ‘Poltergeist’ ‘82?

Point Of View

Rockwell revealed to Collider last month that the focal character has changed for the reboot. 

“The 10-year-old boy is really the protagonist this time. JoBeth Williams was the protagonist for the most part in the first one and now the kid, it’s really through his point-of-view.” So with an altered point of view, albeit a marginal one, it at least offers audiences something fresher with the likelihood for new elements to be brought into play.

A Kids’ Film?!

However, he goes on to say that it’s “more of a kids’ movie so I don’t know if it’s gonna be like rated-R scary.” Well, contrary to these comments and having watched the trailer, it’s safe to say it won’t be anything close to a PG certificate, certainly not in the UK, at least.

Interestingly, the US rating for the original remains one of the rare titles that, for some reason, managed to secure a Parental Guidance, yet the DVD is a 15 in the UK. The 2015 trailer has more than a few genuine jump scares, whereby the BBFC will no doubt grant it either a 12a or, in all probability, a 15.

Benefit Of The Doubt

Overall, it’s a solid trailer. Kenan should perhaps be given the benefit of the doubt because, after all, he’s not simply going for a shot-for-shot copy a la 1998’s ‘Psycho’ (even if it does retain a lot of familiar elements), instead opting to change some key points, such as the main character’s perspective.

'Poltergeist' is out in the UK, and in 3D, on 31 July.

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Picture credits: Vertigo Entertainment