top of page

Haunted Mansion (2023) Review and Easter Eggs

Welcome Foolish Mortals... or should we say... Hey Ohana,

With Halloween right around the corner, we thought this would be the perfect time to share our thoughts on the new Haunted Mansion movie with you all and see what you all think. Haunted Mansion in Walt Disney World has always been a favorite of ours and has only become even more so ever since bringing our son Lincoln to the parks and him loving the attraction. When we ask him what ride he wants to go on first, it’s usually Haunted Mansion and we can’t go a week without hearing Grim Grinning Ghosts at some point in the house or car.

So when we heard that a new Haunted Mansion film was coming out we knew that we’d end up dishing out the hundreds of dollars (ok not really, but pretty close these days) to go see it in theaters. Now to be perfectly honest with you, we had mixed emotions. The Eddie Murphy version of Haunted Mansion, while a fun family film left a little to be desired in our opinion and with some of Disney’s more recent films not really living up to the films of our childhood, we weren’t sure what to expect. Yet, as more and more info was released leading up to its release, from the cast to its premise we couldn’t help but get more excited.

It was with that excitement that Krystle, Lincoln, and I ventured to our first movie in theaters since before COVID! In the second half of this article we’ll be sharing all the little Easter Eggs we spotted (we’re sure there are more and we’d love to hear if you found others as you watched), but wanted to share our spoiler free reaction first in case some of you have still not had the chance to see it. As we watched the film we couldn’t help but find ourselves smiling as each little nod to the attraction unfolded before us. Now was the film perfect…no. Was it better than the Eddie Murphy version, we think so, but will say that they really are two different films. Was it a good movie and worthy of your time and money…definitely. If you’re a fan of the attraction you’ll have a blast hunting for those Easter eggs and you won’t be disappointed. There are a few changes to the story that we know. They do a pretty good job of merging both the Disneyland and Disney World versions of Haunted Mansion (which we’ll point out later in the article) as well so fans of both will find something to enjoy.

Before we move on to our SPOILER FILLED rundown of our favorite nods to the attractions and plot points we just want to say that if you haven’t seen the film yet…do it! While we are writing this up at the end of the film's theatrical run we are eagerly awaiting Disney's announcement of when it will drop on Disney+ (UPDATE: It comes out THIS Wednesday Oct 4!) to watch it again!

Now without further ado here is your SPOILER WARNING - DO NOT READ ON IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THE FILM!

So to be honest with you, as we watched the film I (Matt) jotted down a few notes on the Easter eggs we noticed and plot points that we found fun. So below we’re going to share those notes which are essentially written in order of viewing the film.

  1. The film opens in the only way it should, with the words, “Welcome Foolish Mortals…”

  2. Takes place in New Orleans

  3. If you look carefully at the design on the Uhaul truck it looks like Facilier from “Princess and the Frog”

  4. As Travis first enters the Mansion there is a quick “stretching” effect - reminiscent of first entering the stretching room

  5. Lot’s of early nods to some of the most popular ghosts (e.g. Bride, Hatbox)

  6. Hatbox ghost’s first appearance includes “ you’ll be back” as Travis and Gabbie flee

  7. Ben’s camera that takes pics of ghosts uses a “quantum lens” - we wondered if this was a nod to the quantum realm of MCU?

  8. A cool plot point that the film includes is that once someone enters the mansion “that’s it’

  9. The famous marble busts are easily seen in the library room bookshelves

  10. We spied a Black Panther action figure among Travis’s protection around his tent

  11. The mansion includes the same wallpapers, sconces, and so on from the attractions.


  13. “Don’t use flash! They don’t like that” - haha just like the ride!

  14. The Dueling portraits

  15. Hitchhiking ghosts! When some leaves the mansion after entering a ghost is seen in the back of their car very quickly and then “follows them home”

  16. Ben’s bedroom door - the rattling doors from the ride

  17. Yes! The Floating candelabra makes an appearance!

  18. Another interesting concept is that things get worse (don’t leave the main room - the stretching room) after midnight

  19. The sign outside of Harriet’s shop is very Memento Mori reminiscent

  20. Travis’s Monopoly game is Marvel themed

  21. The story keeps William Gracey as the original owner

  22. Madame Leota was brought in by Gracey to try and end the haunting taking place at the Mansion - different than widely believed background of Leota from the ride.

  23. In the Seance scene, Harriet uses some of the same seance lines Leota uses on the ride

  24. The sign outside of Harriet’s shop is very Memento Mori reminiscent

  25. Travis’s Monopoly game is Marvel themed

  26. The story keeps William Gracey as the original owner

  27. Madaam Leota was brought in by Gracey to try and end the haunting taking place at the Mansion - different than widely believed background of Leota from the ride.

  28. In the Seance scene, Harriet uses some of the same seance lines Leota uses on the ride

  29. ck scene again uses famous lines from the seance scene in ride “open a bridge to somewhere beyond”

  30. Gracey’s seances to reach his dead wife Eleanor is what drew ghosts to the mansion. Eventually it brought the villain of the film, the Hatbox Ghost), who continued to trap souls in the Mansion

  31. Interesting plot point - Hatbox had trapped 933 souls in the house but needs 1000 to escape the mansion himself. In reality there had been 66 more deaths in the mansion since that original 933 so Hatbox already had 999 - “room for 1 more”

  32. Deaths happen on full moon - when Hatbox is his strongest

  33. Travis’s watch is a Mickey watch!

  34. When Ben enters the ghost realm we see many nods to the rides: Meets Gracey, sees the Viking opera singer, the duelers are dueling, the ghost on the chandelier, dinner party, Lounging tiger lady portrait, etc…

  35. Ben discovers that no one knows the Hatbox ghosts real name, that his power is strong in ghost realism, and that if he gets his 1000 souls to escape the rest of the souls are trapped forever.

  36. When Ben leaves the realm and describes Hatbox he points out “his grin” - “Grim Grinning Ghosts?”

  37. The sketch artists rendering based on Bens description looks just like the ghost form ride

  38. Hatbox Ghosts is revealed to be Alistair Crump - who killed wealthy people (out of revenge/spite) at parties. Not a nice guy. Eventually his staff revolted and beheaded him.

  39. The stretching room finally stretches! Hatbox does this in the film. Portraits stretch. No windows, no doors. The threats from the portraits (quicksand, tnt, alligators) become real threats in the room. Only way out is up (reminiscent of ride where you’re forced to look up for “his way”)

  40. While the haunted mansion in film looks like the one in Disneyland, Crump Manor looks more like the one in Disney World.

  41. Love the cameos by Wynonna Ryder and Dan Levy.

  42. Crump’s head still somewhere in Crump Manor

  43. Interesting plot point - Hatbox’s 1000th soul must be “willing”

  44. Chain used to block fireplace in Crump Manor looks like ones used on ride (complete with bat topper)

  45. The tombstones in the “graveyard” under Crump Manor have the same types of quotes from tombstones outside ride

  46. PLOT TWIST (which we actually called at the beginning) - Kent’s not a priest!

  47. The banishment spell uses familiar line, “When hinges creak in doorless chambers…”

  48. He says it! “There’s 999 souls, but room for one more…”

  49. Plot point - Travis’s dad is actually dead and Hatbox has been using that to manipulate Travis to be the willing 1000th soul (not Ben like you’re lead to believe)

  50. As Gracey helps Ben navigate the ghost realm we get to see the crazy staircases

  51. The “finale” (villain battle) of the film takes places going through the graveyard - just like ride ending in the graveyard - many of the same gimmicks used (look at the flying spirits)

  52. Turns out many of the ghosts don’t actually want to leave the mansion, including Leota whose spell will wear off and return her to her crystal ball.

  53. Cast also decides to stay at the mansion (with the “friendlier” ghosts) - we see the dinner party scene

  54. The cat that hangs out around Ben’s house (seen at beginning of film) ends up being named Tater Tot - a “ghost wink” from Ben’s deceased wife.

  55. End credit scene is a fun dancing ghosts party with the cast and they finally sing grim grinning ghosts.

Well there ya have it, our notes of all the easter eggs and fun plot points we noticed while we watched. We know that there are probably many more and we’d love to hear from you to share what you thought about the film and if we missed any! We invite you to head over to our social media pages to continue the conversation!

Thanks for reading along and as always, See Ya Real Soon.

56 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page