Saturday, November 27, 2010

What do you think? Is 'The Amityville Horror' fact or fiction?

I recently finished reading a book the other day that I’ve been wanting to read for years, “The Amityville Horror: A True Story” by Jay Anson.

Published in September 1977, this book is supposedly based on the true paranormal experiences of George and Kathy Lutz and their three children while they lived in a reportedly haunted house in Amityville, New York. The Lutz family moved into the house about a year after Ronald Defeo Jr. killed six members of his family while they slept inside the home. Twenty-eight days after moving in, the Lutz family fled the house in fear, never to return.

Many of you will be familiar with the story because of the 1979 movie, “The Amityville Horror,” which is based on Anson’s book. In all, nine movies have been made based on The Amityville Horror, including a 2005 remake on the 1979 original.

The book is fascinating for a number of reasons, and if half of the events in the book are true, then it’s a wonder the family stuck it out in the house for as long as they did.

As you might imagine, the book has been the subject of a lot of criticism over the years and has also spawned a number of lawsuits. Many people claim that there’s no way that the events in the book could be true, and I admit that it is a little hard to believe.

However, one of the more interesting bits of trivia concerning it all, makes me give the Lutzes the benefit of the doubt: In June 1979, George and Kathy Lutz passed a lie detector test regarding their experiences. The test was conducted and certified by Professional Security Consultants, and you can view documents from the test online at

I found it interesting that at least 10 other books have been written about The Amityville Horror. Those books, in order of their publication, include the following:

1979 - Murder in Amityville by Hans Holzer
1981 - The Amityville Curse by Hans Holzer
1982 – The Amityville Horror Part II by John G. Jones
1983 – Amityville 3-D by Gordon McGill
1985 – Amityville: The Final Chapter by John G. Jones
1985 - The Secret of Amityville by Hans Holzer
1988 – Amityville: The Evil Escapes by John G. Jones
1989 – Amityville: The Horror Returns by John G. Jones
1991 – Amityville: The Nightmare Continues by Robin Karl
2008 – Mentally Ill In Amityville by Will Savive

In the end, I enjoyed reading Anson’s book and will probably try to tackle some of the others later. Have any of you read “The Amityville Horror”? If so, what did you think about it? Let us know in the comments section below.

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