August 31, 2012
An eBay auction for a Dibbuk Box created a sensation in June of 2003. A would-be seller created a listing for an item that he claimed had cursed his life as well as the lives of his loved ones. To wit, his mother had experienced a stroke the very day he purchased the Jewish wine cabinet. Obviously, he wanted to be rid of the artifact although he stressed that only a person experienced in dealing with the supernatural should bid on the item.
At the time, people suspected that the seller, Kevin Mannis, was simply a clever auctioneer who understood that building a mystery would inevitably create a bidding frenzy for his Dibbuk Box. Several years later, this line of thinking has been tested as the multiple owners of the wine cabinet after him have all experienced what they consider to be cursed behavior as well.
Hollywood is not in the habit of missing the opportunity to sell a horror movie with the all-important sales pitch of “based on a true story”. As such, Lionsgate and Ghost House Productions have joined together to create a fictionalized retelling of the same premise Mannis created on eBay nine years ago. Even better, they have cast Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Kyra Sedgwick as the lead characters in what should be a refreshingly well-acted horror flick.
What is a Dibbuk Box? More accurately spelled “Dybbuk Box”, this wine cabinet is purportedly the host of an evil Jewish spirit known as a Dybbuk. Since these are the “dislocated souls of dead people”, they are not the friendly sort. They are also quite attached to the inside of their wine cabinet box. Anyone foolish enough to open the box is subjected to the hauntings of a particularly annoyed supernatural being who is always angry anyway.
The Possession tells the story of a recently separated couple who happen upon a Dybbuk Box at a yard sale. One of their two children, daughter Em, feels an unnatural connection to the box. As her parents and brother adjust to the new normal in their lives, Em starts staring at the box, hanging out with the box and talking to the box. You know, teen girl stuff. There is very little chance that she goes crazy and attempts to injury others, right? RIGHT?
Okay, Em is probably going to slaughter her entire family while a Dybbuk celebrates inside his comfy wine cabinet home. This is what we want to see in horror films, especially when they can claim to be based on a true story. If you want to read the full details of the original listing, here is a Yahoo! link wherein the author recounts the story. (David Mumpower/BOP)