The Changeling Movie Review Summary

Actors: George C. Scott, Trish Van Devere, Melvyn Douglas

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Changeling

John Russel (George C. Scott) is a well known music teacher and composer who has just lost his wife and young daughter in a car accident. Trying to cope with the grief, he moves to Washington and rents an old, secluded mansion from the Historical Society, unoccupied for twelve years, where he hopes to heal from the loss and return to composing his music.
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It doesn't take long before strange occurrences start taking place. Every morning at 6 o'clock John hears banging noises that seem to be coming from upstairs; doors open on their own, things move, faucets turn on and off. John doesn't believe in ghosts, but when this stuff continues he begins to think that there may be something to it. He goes upstairs to investigate and founds a hidden room, boarded up, with a child's wheelchair in it and a music box. The music box starts playing a melody – an identical one that John has been playing on his piano.

John becomes more convinced that he is sharing the house with a ghostly presence and that the presence is trying to tell him something. He decides to check out the history of the mansion and of the family that had once lived there.

He starts with a visit to the county records office and continues with holding a séance in the house, during which he finds out that the ghost is that of a young boy, named Joseph, who claims to have been murdered in this house 70 years ago. The alleged murderer would be the father of Senator Joseph Carmichael (Melvyn Douglas). John continues his investigation with the help of Claire (Trish Van Devere), a beautiful lady from the Historical Society, helps him in his research. Together, they make a shocking discovery: the senator's father had killed his crippled son and secretly replaced him with a healthy boy, presently known as Senator Joseph Carmichael. Needless to say, the senator doesn't appreciate some newcomer digging into his family history, and he's got means to take care of that.

The review of this Movie prepared by Laura Southcombe

Script Analysis of The Changeling

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Actual chase scenes or violence 30%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 40%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30% How difficult to spot villain?    -   Difficult, but some clues given Time/Era of Movie:    -   1980's-1999 Murder Mystery?    -   Yes What % of story relates directly to the mystery, not the subplot?    -   80% Special suspect?    -   relative Kind of mystery?    -   amateur citizen investigator Horror film?    -   Yes Horror Plotlets:    -   haunted house or boat

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Profession/status:    -   musician Age:    -   40's-50's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   White (American)


United States    -   Yes Misc setting    -   fancy mansion

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   moderately messy visuals of dead

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