Follow TV Tropes


Film / Winchester

Go To

Winchester (previously titled Winchester: The House that Ghosts Built) is a horror film directed by The Spierig Brothers and starring Helen Mirren as Sarah Winchester and Jason Clarke as Eric Price.

Sarah Winchester is adamant that she is cursed after her husband and child died suddenly, and under advisement from a medium, she begins building the Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, California.

The film was released on February 3, 2018 by Lionsgate and CBS Films.

Previews: Teaser, Trailer 1

Winchester contains examples of:

  • 13 Is Unlucky: Inverted; Sarah says that thirteen nails will seal the ghosts in.
  • Alcoholic Parent: That's how Henry's mother describes his late father.
  • Bizarrchitecture: As in real life, the Winchester Mansion is an MC Escher painting come to life, with endless halls, doors, stairs to nowhere and other oddities that make it one of the strangest buildings in history.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: It's made very clear that the board of Winchester Repeating Arms wants Dr. Price to find Sarah incompetent so that they can take control of the company from her.
  • Creepy Children Singing: Towards the end of the movie, a possessed Henry sings the same song that Benjamin Block sang just before dying.
  • Demonic Possession: Henry is possessed by a ghost at various points in the movie.
  • Disappeared Dad: Henry Marriott is a child whose father died before the beginning of the movie.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Dr. Price starts the movie dealing with his wife's death with the help of alcohol, laudanum and prostitutes.
  • Mama Bear: Sarah says that she will do whatever it takes to protect her family.
  • Mirror Scare: Eric turns his rotating mirror sideways at one point, and a ghost appears in front of him behind the mirror.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: Sarah Winchester outlived her infant daughter.
  • Rewatch Bonus: Note that no one other than Eric addresses a particular butler and never speaks in the presence of others.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Dr. Price carries the bullet his wife shot him with, and Sarah still has a lock of her late daughter's hair.
  • Very Loosely Based on a True Story: The trailers say that the film is "inspired by actual events". The house, Sarah herself, and her years-long construction projects are completely real; however, her belief that she was haunted and had to keep building to trap the ghosts is less so (and in real life she often stopped the construction for months at a time). As the house was almost immediately turned into a tourist attraction after Sarah's death and the new owners encouraged/started rumors about ghosts to bring in more custom, it's hard to sort out what people genuinely thought was going on with the house from what was just the PR campaign.