St. Francisville Experiment

St. Francisville Experiment was suppose to be an actual documentary about a night in an actual haunted house. It starts off with the producer telling the audience that everything presented in the movie was true. When you actually see the movie, you learn it is anything but that.

It is allegedly a film marketed as a real version of the Blair Witch Project. In order to do this, they needed a ghost story and a location to film. St. Francisville, Louisiana is known for its hauntings, making it a perfect location for this movie. The actual ghost story that inspired it was that of the Madame Delphine LaLaurie. She was married to a doctor named Louis LaLaurie and they lived in a beautiful mansion in the French Quarter. According to the story, she was particularly cruel to the slaves they owned.

She kept one woman chained in the kitchen and was never allowed to leave. It was thought this female slave was the one who started the fire at the Lalaurie house thus allowing the world to discover what Madame Lalaurie was really doing behind closed doors. In the attic, they found slaves in dog size cages, strapped to operating tables, human body parts and organs everywhere, women with their stomachs sliced open and their internal organs wrapped around their waist, men's private parts cut off, and many other horrors. Even though her husband didn't take part in all this, it is believed he was aware of it and did nothing.

A mob gathered in front of the house with the intentions of confronting her, but she managed to escape in a carriage. No one knows for sure where they ran to. How is this connected to St. Francisville? It is believed the Lalouries had family in St. Francisville and may have chosen it to hide out in. The mansion used in the film was said to be the location of her hiding place. Of course, there is no record of this taking place.

At the beginning of the movie, the story behind Madame Lalaurie's cruelty is discussed and the four strangers, a history student, psychic, film student, and their team leader staying in the mansion were introduced. Troy Taylor is a well known person in the paranormal world. He agreed to be in the movie under the impression that it was a documentary and was not happy with the finished product. He gave a crash course on ghost hunting to the participants. Showed them how to use the equipment and what to do. They were then taken to the house, given everything they needed and then, locked inside.

The psychic Madison was pretty annoying throughout the movie. She kept talking about white light. I am not familiar with cleansing rituals of which this may be part of it, but from a viewer standpoint, it was annoying to hear about it every two seconds. As for "activity", a chandelier fell (which could be because its an old house), a door supposedly opened by itself, a few noises, and a chair flipped over in the attic. They even found a doll wrapped in gauze hid in a hole in the wall. The group also did a seance. When the two ladies were sitting at the Ouija board, shackles fell out of the chimney. The girl Ryan who was probably the most scared out of all of them decided to check it out. She laid under the opening and nearly got hit in the head from a falling chain.

The movie gives you the impression that it's an actual documentary until the ending. They decide to do some kind of cleansing ritual or something. Instead of going from room to room together, they separate which was not a good idea. I believe Troy warned them against doing that. The table in Ryan's room began to shake until she appeared to fall through the floor. I think Tim was dragged through the hidden door in his room. Madison sat down her camera and "something" (if you pause or slow the scene down you can see a disfigured face in the mirror) picked it up and began cutting or scratching her. Paul was in the attic. I don't think anything really happened to him. He heard Madison screaming and the lights going on and off and darted down to rescue everyone. He found Madison in the same room. They found the other two in a hidden room. Ryan was strapped to an operating table and Tim was hung up on the wall by chains or whatever. The ending was scary but was obviously fake.

The movie is entertaining and scary. Some will enjoy it for it is. From a paranormal stance, it's not all what it's cracked up to be. These kids did stay in the house all night, but some of it was probably staged. It's basically a horror movie created to look like a documentary. I suggest if you watch it, do so for the entertainment value and nothing more.


Courtney Mroch said…
Thank you for the honest review. I always appreciate your critiques because you are so fair. If it's good, you'll say. If it has weak parts, you'll say. If I get the chance to watch this I will do so keeping in mind "entertainment value only" =)
Anonymous said…
This so called documentary is total crap. No one was credible, to much joking around about about a serious subject. First of all spirits of that time would not be able to spell, read or write if they were slaves. Being black they would not have a reason to trust whites.
If you're trying to communicate with spirits, attempting to get them to leave a place is a threat, a practioner would know not to do this. Christanity was not the accepted religion of slaves, so " the white light was crap ".
Spirits are all around us at all times, some will be violent if provoked, this documentary did a lot of that. I live in a home with spirits, have been touched, seen things move, and heard my name called. After 35 years it doesn't bother me, when I leave town and return I greet them like they are here in the flesh.
My father was always afraid of my home because he said he felt like he was being watched and the house was always cold. He died four years ago, but has appeared on two occasions so far, he was 81 at his death, but everytime I see him he appears much younger. I have smelled his scent numerous time.
I am 62, I have seen spirits all my life and am very very at ease with them. Its about respect in both life and death.

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