Saturday, October 11, 2008

Nightmare: Bad Dreams Come True

Timothy Haskell's fifth-annual haunted house, Nightmare: Bad Dreams Come True isn't likely to give you nightmares, especially if you're with a talkative or sarcastic group, but it's going to scare you at least once, and that's the most one can expect (or actually want) from the experience. More than that, there are at least four really original moments, which, to preserve their horror, I can only describe as involving a strobe light, a liquid stream, a locker room, and a giant face. However, the "play" lacks structure, and the ambiance diminishes each time you accidentally walk out a fire exit, double back on an unprepared actor, or worse, have an apologetic monster double back to get you. The moment-to-moment shocks are also a bit of a tease--worse, in fact than a strip club's champagne room, for not only can't you touch the performers: they can't touch you. This leads to some tame sections of the house, like the action-less Saw V room, or the Frankenstein exhibit. It's also remarkably short (well, you do run/stumble quite a bit), with our group in the dark for less than twenty minutes (both sections). It's ooky, but it's not altogether spooky. Snap snap.

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