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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Tower of Terror (1997)



Reviews and Comments

It's not at all uncommon for a theme park ride to be based on a movie, but rarely is it ever the other way around. The original Tower of Terror, however, is a haunted house ride at Disney/MGM Studios, Florida (which, in turn, is based on the television series, The Twilight Zone), where they strap you into an elevator and drop you. The TV movie, Tower of Terror is based on that ride, minus the Twilight Zone references -- as closely based as a movie can be on a plotless ride, anyway.

Steve Guttenberg heads the cast as a once-respectable, now tabloid journalist who meets an old woman with the explanation behind a mysterious 1939 disappearance of five people, including a beloved child star.

Attempting to make this movie scary, but still family-oriented, there are more false jump scenes (most of which fail) than I could have imagined possible. There's corny TV-mystery dialogue, where quirky co-stars show up (during a jump scene) and explain their life stories to the main character. And what TV movie would be complete without atrocious acting? While Tower of Terror isn't terrible, it did aggravate my dislike of made-for-TV films in general.