Gaslighting is manipulating someone by psychological means into questioning their sanity. That is how Pet Sematary (2019) made me feel; not to single out this film, most remakes make me feel this way. I know the story, I’ve read and seen it several times, yet as I watched I began questioning everything that is true.
I get it. Remakes are designed to bring in a new audience (money) and piss off fans of the original. This one, in particular, was done horribly. I expected more suspense and thrills than what I got. The effects were bland and expected and ordinary. When you have a story like this, making changes can be a slippery slope, and nothing they did made it better, but tore it apart. At least they didn’t change the character names, which, now that I think about it, might have been better if a new family had moved into the house; but what to do about Judd?
The sound effects, score, and the cute kitties who played Church were the best elements of the movie. John Lithgow as Judd was also a good choice, and the twins playing Gage were uncannily similar looking to the actor in the original. But these few things didn’t make up for the missed elements or even the overplayed ones. The cover of Pet Sematary by the Ramones was dreadful, too. Oh, I almost forgot, I liked the funeral procession of children wearing masks, taking the dog to the Pet Sematary was a nice touch, and added something macabre.
When the ending finally came, I rolled my eyes and groaned. It was too much. All these things I’ve mentioned (and more), describe how the creators of this film gaslighted me. But guess what? I know the truth, that’s not really what happened. Ask anyone. They’ll tell a completely different story than what they tried to manipulate into my mind.
I give Pet Sematary (2019) 1.5 out of 5 Stars. I highly recommend that you pretend it wasn’t made and move on with your life.