- Alternate Character Interpretation: Jodie. If we assume that she is not responsible for everything that occurs in the film, then she comes off as almost Ambiguously Evil, as she happily plays with Amy, and does things (locking the babysitter in the closet, shutting a window on Matt's hand hard enough to hurt but not hard enough to do any serious damage, and expressing a distaste for George) that appear to be for Amy's benefit (the babysitter had gotten stern with Amy, Matt was teasing her, and George had yelled at her).
- Awesome Music: Lalo Schifrin's iconic theme for the film (rearranged and reused in the second film as well) was nominated for an Oscar.
- Critic-Proof: Despite generally negative reviews, it was the second-biggest hit at the domestic box office in 1979, behind only Kramer vs. Kramer.
- Ham and Cheese: Rod Steiger's performance as Father Delaney is decidedly unsubtle. On the other hand, he's one of the movie's more enjoyable characters.
- Idiot Plot: The family in this movie need to seriously have an IQ test, as they NEVER catch on to the various horrors going on, and instead blame each other.
- Newer Than They Think: This movie started the whole "houses built on Indian burial grounds will be haunted" thing.
- Special Effects Failure: Whether the reveal of Jodie's true form - as a huge, demonic pig with glowing red eyes - is genuinely terrifying, or silly and underwhelming (as it's clearly a normal pig with its eyes colored) is down to the individual viewer.
- The Woobie: Father Delaney, hands down. He's practically a punching bag for the malevolent spirits in the house, and by the end of the film has lost his faith, gone blind, and been rendered comatose with no end to his suffering in sight.
YMMV / The Amityville Horror (1979)