Silent Hill Review

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[Silent Hill]
Plot:Rose cannot accept the knowledge that her daughter Sharon is dying of a fatal disease. Over the protests of her husband, she flees with her child, intending to take the girl to a faith healer. On the way, she ends up driving through a portal in reality, which takes her to the eerie and deserted town of Silent Hill. Sharon disappears in Silent Hill, and Rose follows what she thinks is her daughter’s silhouette all over town. It’s soon clear the town is not like any place she’s ever been. It’s inhabited by a variety of creatures and a living darkness that descends and literally transforms everything it touches. The human inhabitants—the ones who are left—are trapped and fighting a losing battle against the Darkness. Joined by a cop named Cybil, who has been sent to bring her and Sharon back, Rose searches for her little girl while learning the history of Silent Hill, and that Sharon is just a pawn in a larger game.

Cast: Radha Mitchell, Deborah Kerr Unger, Daniella Canjura, Sean Bean, Laurie Holden, Tanya Allen, Christopher Britton, Kim Coates, Jodelle Ferland, Alice Krige.

My Thoughts:Intriguing film that is partially ruined by such an auspicious ending.

Review:"Silent Hill" is not the kind of film that will keep you going at 200 MPH, but it will definitely keep your mind and eyes going. While it isn't one of those films that offers up more questions than it can answer in the time alloted, it does succeed in making itself one huge question, one the viewer will walk out of the theater trying to answer for hours. Radha Mitchell plays the character of Rose in the film, who's daughter Sharon is ill with some sort of disease. There's something happening on a much deeper level with Sharon than just her being quote unquote ill, but I won't give that away. To make matters worse, Sharon sleepwalks and while sleepwalking, she continuously mentions a place called "Silent Hill". Rose decides to take Sharon to this mysterious place, hoping it'll be the cure for what ails her. There's alot to like about "Silent Hill", most of all it's ambition to move right into the story within the first 20 minutes of the film...and introduce us to the town of "Silent Hill", which is a small town that resides within Taluca county West Virginia. On the way to "Silent Hill", Rose runs afoul of a police officer named Sybil, who she decides to evade in Knight Rider fashion for some odd reason, and ends up crashing her car. When she awakens, her daughter is gone...and Rose's nightmare has just begun. "Silent Hill" is one of those rare horror movies that is visually stunning. Which isn't difficult seeing as how most horror films are set in the usual places, the suburbs, the city, or a smalltown in the middle of nowhere. The town is very spooky looking, and alot of credit should be given to the films director Cristophe Gans who effectively manages to create a really tense and unsettling mood with the foggy and ash ridden town. Once Rose set's out into the ghost town of "Silent Hill" to find her daughter, the film wastes no time in introducing us to a few of the horrific looking demons and ghouls that roam the place including the "Pyramid Head" demon which skulks around with a huge sphere and is followed closely by flesh eating demon bugs. He truly is an awesome sight to see on screen, and it's too bad he didn't get that much screentime. Later in the movie, Sybil (Laurie Holden), the female police officer Rose ditched earlier, shows back up and eventually becomes an ally to Rose in finding her daughter. Rose also runs into some more eccentric characters in a woman in rags, and a group of religious elders. Both of which we later on learn, play a huge part in the films overall story. "Silent Hill" uses that old horror movie cliche of the main character chasing a silhouette lookalike of her daughter, to keep Rose moving about the town. Normally this sort of thing annoys me, seeing as how I really really hate it when the main character partakes in such ridiculous pursuits knowing full well they'll lead to death. But like alot of things in this movie, the constant game of cat and mouse between Rose, and who she thinks is her daughter has a method to it's madness. The story of "Silent Hill" doesn't unfold too quickly or too slowly, and the film takes the viewer through the distubring, hellish world of the town before it begins to reveal it's big secret little by little. The reason why the town is the way it is, and how the demons can come and go is also a very interesting plot point in the movie which helps to keep the suspense and intensity throughout. There's also a subplot happening with Rose's husband Cristopher and the local West Virginia authorities who seem hellbent on keeping him from finding out too much about the town. "Silent Hill" does use cgi for it's monsters and alot of it's "hell" scenes but it doesn't make itself too much of a bother and the pitch black settings manage to overshadow most of it. But not all is perfect with the film. For one it's ultimate reveal works as a double-edged sword, giving a chilling account of what lead to the destruction of the town, but at the same time killing the mystery of "Silent Hill" drastically. When it's finally revealed who set in motion this chain of events that led to the town's untimely demise, it brings about a "That's it?" kind of feeling. The ending also works against this movie, as it is so auspicious it's mind-boggling. While it wasn't as good as I expected it to be, "Silent Hill" does offer up some great moments and some really freaky imagery, despite a clunky and rushed ending.

Pros:Great sceneries, good fx especially with Pyramid Head who looked awesome, and good performances by Mitchell and Holden.

Cons:Not enough Pyramid head and the ending was just all wrong for this movie and really explained nothing.

Overall:Definitely worth your money, and figuring out the ending amongst your friends should provide some much needed entertainment during the ride home.

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