IF August seems a peculiar time to be releasing a Halloween adventure comedy, well, Disney’s new Haunted Mansion is a peculiar film.

Based - as was the Eddie Murphy film of 2003 - on Disney’s eponymous theme park attraction, the film is too scary for universal family appeal but rather too slapstick for adults alone. Hampered by strikes across the Atlantic, the film has failed to find an audience in America. It seems unlikely to fare better in the UK.

Haunted Mansion comes penned by Katie Dippold, a seasoned talent, whose work includes 2016’s Ghostbusters revival and Sandra Bullock action comedy The Heat. To her credit, while the gags are hit and miss, there’s an emotional core here that gifts Dippold’s cast a chance to shine. They’re a likeable bunch and welcome company.

Rosario Dawson heads things up. The Ahsoka star plays Gabbie, a recently widowed doctor from New York who seeks a fresh start in New Orleans with her son, Chase W. Dillon’s Travis. Their ploy is to turn the ramshackle Gracey Manor into a welcoming bed and breakfast. This proves more challenging than expected when the pair discover that their new home is haunted.

Enter LaKeith Stanfield’s Ben Matthias, an astrophysicist turned ghost tour guide and fellow widow. Invited by a local priest cum exorcist, Owen Wilson’s Father Kent, to photograph the ghouls, Ben’s initial scepticism soon gives way to horror when one of the undead follows him home.

The lion’s share of the laughs are afforded Tiffany Haddish, who joins as legitimate psychic Harriet, although Jamie Lee Curtis enjoys a brief but scene-stealing turn as Madame Leota, a haunted head in a fish bowl. Danny DeVito plays haunted house historian Prof Bruce Davis, while Jared Leto is suitably eerie as the voice behind the film’s big bad.

Fans of the Haunted Mansion ride - which opened at the original Anaheim park in 1969 and was later translated to Florida and Tokyo - can take heart in the film’s devotion to its source. There are Easter Eggs aplenty and a largely familiar ensemble of spooks.

Where the ride revels in superb animatronics, however, the film’s computer generated visuals don’t pass muster. This becomes a problem as the story becomes increasingly reliant on effects. There is fun to be had here but it’s no Pirates of the Caribbean.