The Changeling is a film that is superbly acted but lacks imagination in what it brings to the horror table. It's all fairly predictable, apart from one bone-chilling moment involving a bouncy ball. While George C. Scott carries this whole film on his immensely talented back, there's very little else to get excited about with The Changeling. The story drags and the film ends abruptly without any real resolution, and they just had to tack on that final tease of the ghost still being out there.
Scott plays John Russell, a music teacher who loses his wife and daughter in a tragic accident. To process his grief, he moves into a historical mansion to get away from it all. There, he discovers a supernatural force is trying to communicate with him, and he learns that it's the ghost of a little boy who was murdered by his father in the attic. Seeing this as his chance to finally move on, Russell tries to bring the boy's murder to light, even if that means pissing off a very powerful senator (Melvyn Douglas) in the process. The film has all the familiar elements of a haunted house movie, but it's all so by-the-numbers. Nothing really pops or stands out, apart from the one scene that I mentioned above.
Overall, The Changeling feels like a "one and done" kinda movie. It's a film horror fans should see, but it isn't one that's going to end up on a lot of top 10 lists. It has its moments, and George C. Scott's performance is flawless as usual, but the film is just too basic to be memorable.