Thursday, April 1, 2010

Oh, The Horror! #50: The Others

A movie I've been wanting to see again for years. I had only seen this movie once before and recall being absolutely amazed by it, from the quality of production to the performances to the ending. The ending is a fantastic modern classic twist if I do say so myself. Actually, the first time I seen this movie fully, I knew the twist because I walked in to the last 5 minutes of the film when it was in theaters when I was looking for my mother who was watching this film. But now that I finally own this film and watching it now with a clearer mentality and love for film-making and horror in general, this movie definitely still has and showcases the type of horror that I absolute love and strive to study and hopefully capture with my own art whether it be writing or filming.

The movie stars Nicole Kidman as a stern and sometimes very cold mother named Grace. She is very hard on her children Anne (Alakina Mann) and Nicholas (James Bentley), constantly pushing the words of the Lord and Bible in their minds. She is also highly protective of them due to their disease of being photosensitive. If the sun were to hit their skin, they'd get a terrible allergic reaction and die. Therefore Grace makes sure to cover the whole house in curtains in safety of her children. While she is very strict, you still get a sense in every scene of the love and devotion to her children. Her husband has also been missing and declared dead from fighting in the war and all her servants have abruptly left the house. Grace ends up opening her house to three servants passing by. While very nice and charming, as the movie progresses you're not quite sure what exactly their motives are. Especially in connection to the strange occurrences in the house. Grace one day hears the sounds of a child crying. She rushes quickly to her children but neither of them admits to the tears. That is when Grace's daughter, Anne, brings up a boy named Victor, the name of a ghost in the house. Grace, a believer of the afterlife and her religious teachings, refuses to believe this and punishes her daughter until she herself begins to experience the occurrences. She is very tough as she tries her best to find out what is going on in the house and attempts to fight these unwanted ghosts out of the house while protecting her children and trying to keep her sanity.

Director Alejandro AmenĂ¡bar does a fantastic job guiding us through this psychological supernatural thriller. The atmosphere, tone, and mood set up since the very beginning is done beautifully and is compared well with the fantastic use of music, sound effects, and mixing. All the technical setups including seamless camera shots and editing really brings us to a very tight and coherent production. Combined with strong performances from the actors, the Others is overall a plain winner in my book. Very underrated, if you ask me. I also applaud the fact that I don't recall seeing any real CGI special effects. Nearly everything seen in the film seems very practical to shoot. It seems many people forget that you can easily get under people's skins and/or astonish them with just great use of camera work, tense shots and moments along with sounds and moving doors that you can simply have some one move with their hands while under the camera view, heh. If you have not seen this film, what are you waiting for?


Will Errickson said...

I need to see this again as well, but I recall thinking it was terrific. I also liked Amenabar's OPEN YOUR EYES and THESIS.

Diana_Fan said...

Greg, The Others is brilliant and creepy and everything else a scary little movie should be.

Kidman is exquisite. God I loved this movie.

Thanks for reminding me of it.