Another based-in-truth story of an average, innocent family moving into a malevolent haunted house, The Haunting in Connecticut unsurprisingly recalls The Amityville Horror.

Another based-in-truth story of an average, innocent family moving into a malevolent haunted house, The Haunting in Connecticut unsurprisingly recalls The Amityville Horror.

Though he steers clear of Amityville's most ridiculous histrionics, in his feature debut director Peter Cornwell seems more comfortable inviting the comparison and referencing other horror movies than courting originality.

There's a good reason why mom Sara Campbell (Virginia Madsen) rents a creepy but cheap former funeral home for her family: to spare teenage son Matt (Kyle Gallner), whose late-stage cancer is being treated with a painful experimental procedure, the long car trips home.

Nevertheless, with increasing frequency, things go all sepia-toned for Matt and he becomes witness to a property history involving ritually defiled bodies and ectoplasmic goo.

Connecticut leans more on the family drama than you'd expect, and though Madsen is credible, co-star Elias Koteas adds a nice, DeNiro-esque vibe and Gallner gives the film some soul, you don't develop a lot of investment in most of the characters. And Cornwell doesn't deliver many more thrills than you'd find in the haunted house at the state fair.