The Haunting of Sharon Tate is both horror, thriller and drama. Hilary Duff stars as Sharon Tate which works surprisingly well for me. Even the premise is interesting but the result isn’t quite what I hoped for. Check out our review to learn why!

The Haunting of Sharon Tate is a new horror thriller with more drama than I expected – or even wanted. The premise of the story is the notion that Sharon Tate kept dreaming about her imminent and very violent death.

She lives in fear and tries to talk to her friends about it. Especially since they also die in these dreams and visions she’s having. This might sound a bit weird, but it’s done very well.

The reason The Haunting of Sharon Tate didn’t quite work for me is the pacing. Well, that and the fact that we keep going over the brutal events a few too many times for my liking.

The “what if” of it all

Early on, Sharon Tate (Hilary Duff) talks to a friend about the idea of fate and premonitions; Is it possible to change anything if it’s your destiny? Part of the answer involves the idea of multiverses. And yes, that is a pretty big foreshadowing.

I really love the idea of “what if”. The idea that you have a premonition – or just a gut feeling – that something awful is about to happen. What if you acted on that feeling and did whatever you could to change the course of your life.

This is basically the story of The Haunting of Sharon Tate.

The Haunting of Sharon Tate - review

Based on a true story

Obviously, this movie is based on a true story since it’s based on the death of Sharon Tate. Or rather, it’s based on the final days of Sharon Tate’s life. The filmmakers have gone to great lengths to create scenes and moments that were documented in photographs during these final days.

To me, that just creates one big problem for the movie; Charles Manson and “his family” really did kill Sharon Tate along with several others. This makes the premise of “what if” redundant. So no ending would really work in a satisfying manner. Either you change facts in a grotesque way or it will end exactly as we know. 

Also, I can certainly understand why Sharon Tate’s sister did not support this (or the many other) movies about this tragic event.

Horror director with a new niche

Daniel Farrands wrote and directed The Haunting of Sharon Tate. He has worked on several horror documentaries about either iconic horror movies or true horror stories. But, to me, the story of Sharon Tate and the Manson family is one we should leave alone now.

With the possible exception of the upcoming Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. But that remains to be seen.

Even if I did find The Haunting of Sharon Tate to have some interesting details included. And Hilary Duff did what she could with the premise and lack of any satisfying outcome. Still, I prefer the performance of Katie Cassidy in The Wolves at the Door so I would recommend that one instead. 

The next movie from Daniel Farrands is The Murder of Nicole Brown Simpson which will star Mena Suvari in the title role. In general, this upcoming movie has a pretty awesome cast. This includes Taryn Manning (The Vault), Agnes Bruckner, Nick Stahl, and Gene Freeman (Into the Dark: Pooka!) as OJ Simpson.

I’m actually looking forward to it. Maybe because that particular murder didn’t result in any kind of closure whereas Charles Manson and members of his family did actually end up behind bars. 

The Haunting of Sharon Tate will be out in theaters and On Demand from April 5, 2019.

Details

Director: Daniel Farrands
Writer: Daniel Farrands
Cast: Hilary Duff, Jonathan Bennett, Lydia Hearst, Pawel Szajda, Ryan Cargill, Bella Popa

Plot

Based on one of Hollywood’s most chilling murder cases, this spellbinding thriller follows 26-year-old actress Sharon Tate (Hilary Duff), a rising star about to have her first baby with her husband, director Roman Polanski. Plagued by terrifying premonitions, Sharon sees her worst nightmares come to life with the appearance of Charles Manson and his deadly cult. 

Karina "ScreamQueen" Adelgaard

I write reviews and recaps on Heaven of Horror. And yes, it does happen that I find myself screaming, when watching a good horror movie. I love psychological horror, survival horror and kick-ass women. Also, I have a huge soft spot for a good horror-comedy. Oh yeah, and I absolutely HATE when animals are harmed in movies, so I will immediately think less of any movie, where animals are harmed for entertainment (even if the animals are just really good actors). Fortunately, horror doesn't use this nearly as much as comedy. And people assume horror lovers are the messed up ones. Go figure!
Karina

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Review Date
Reviewed Item
The Haunting of Sharon Tate (2019)
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