True crime novelist Ellison Oswalt (Ethan Hawke), moves his family into a new home, where a string of grisly murders took place some months previous. Ellison has fallen on hard times, and hasn't had a best selling book in years, and hopes his new novel, about the events in the house he's now living in, will put him back on the road to fame and fortune.
Discovering a box of old cine films and a projector up in the loft, he proceeds to go through them, only to find they appear to have been left there by the murderer and they contain the brutal killings of not only the last family to have lived there, but several other families over the years.
Realising that the house's previous occupants were victims of a serial killer, rather than turn the films over to the police, he decides to see if he can solve the case himself, believing that doing so will give him the best selling book he so desperately craves. But after a while he begins to suspect that the films were deliberately left there for him to find, and that the killer is deliberately leaving him clues as to his identity. Also, the deeper he gets drawn into the images on the films, the more he begins to suspect that they're not alone in the house, and moving there was all part of the killers plan...
A genuinely creepy film, that's bound to make you jump out of your seat. I was initially apprehensive about going to see this, owing to the fact it was produced by the makers of those god-awful "Paranormal Activity" films, but as the film got going found myself pleasantly surprised. Vincent D'Onforio (that guy out of "Law and Order" on TV) has a guest role as a university lecturer, who's trying to help him solve the case, and I also thought James Ransone was good as the goofy Sheriff's Deputy, who starts off as a comic stooge, but as the film progresses, turns out to be a damnsite cleverer than we initially thought.
If you like "ghostly" films, then this one's definitely a must.