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Plot:"They" is the story of a psychology student named Julia who used to have night terrors as a kid after witnessing the death of her father. Now, shes a full adult, a psyche major, and she has a boyfriend. However, after recieving a distraut phone call from her childhood friend Billy, things start to take a turn for the worse.
My review:This film starts out very well, with a stormy night type of atmosphere. We see Julias childhood friend Billy, as a kid. He knows "They" are lurking. Billys mom tells him theres nothing to be afraid of, and leaves.Billy gets a look at the creatures, and scream for his mom. Billy hides under the covers with his flashlight. Sounds in the room of claws scratching the floor, and objects breaking. Billys flashlight goes out, and hes then hes drug under the bed by "They".
Fast forward years later,Julia Lund, is heading up to her apartment after a morning bike ride. She hates new age technology, and takes pills (it is never clearly established why she takes these pills or what the purpose of these pills are). Julia checks her messages, 1 of which is from her mom, telling her to stop taking the pills, and the second is from her boyfriend Paul (played by Marc Blucas) telling her hes picking her up later on that night for a date. After the date, Julia and Paul go back to his place, Paul takes Julia into his room. Julia recieves a phone call from her childhood friend Billy. Hes upset over something, so Julia leaves Paul and goes to meet Billy at a restaurant. Billy (played by Jon Abrahams), looks almost zombie like. Bags under his bloodshot red eyes, and a strange mark on his hand thats oozing purple colored liquid. Hes obviously shaken and frightened of something, and can't even keep his hands still. He spills the whole story to her. About how the night terrors they feared as kids, have come back, and are after him! He also tells her that the creatures can affect things such as lights, electrical things, and that a baby crying is her warning that "They" are nearby. He also says that maybe even Edgar Allen Poe was a victim of these creatures based on his dark and hopeless writings.
Billy also tells her how hes sought out others who have had similar experiences to his. While this conversation is happening, the lights in the restaurant continue to short out and flicker off and on and the thunder from the storm gets louder and louder. All of this is making Billy more unstable, Julias attempts to calm him down aren't working. Billy pulls out a gun, and takes his own life, right in front of Julia. Julia sits there in a daze as patrons in the restaurant scurry about terrorfied of what just happened. Julia returns to Pauls. Later that night, the phone rings, and upon answering it Julia hears nothing before the phone goes dead. Julia goes downstairs to find Paul, and hears running water from the bathroom. She enters, and hears sounds coming from the medicine cabinet. She opens it, on the other side, is a whole nother world. A dark, slimy dimension. Seperating her world from that one is a slimy web. She reaches in to touch it. The goo on her hand then starts to sort of attack her, she freaks, and slams the cabinet door. Julia screams, and her boyfriend Paul enters the bathroom. She attacks him. Then says "How did I get here??". Paul says maybe you were sleep walking. The next day, Julia attends Billys funeral and meets two of his friends Sam (Ethan Embry), and Terri (Dagmara Dominczyk). Julia goes up to Billys room, and looks around. She sees weird drawings of demonic like creatures, and drawers full of flashlights, batteries, nightlights, etc. Terri walks in on her, and asks her if she had night terrors as a kid. Julia says yes, and Terri explains how her, Sam and Billy met, how he told them they need to stay in the light, and then later on down the road, told them he had sought them out based on their experiences with night terrors.
On the drive home, something leaps at her windshield. She puts on the brakes, and then tries to restart her car which won't restart. Upon getting out to check under the car, she hears strange noises. Julia hops back in her car, and then her dead friend Billy appears in the seat next to her. Julia screams, and falls out of the car, when she gets up, the car is working fine. Julia goes to see Terri and Sam the following day. Sam reads a few pages from Billys diary, which mention the creatures maybe being bringers of nightmares. Terri explains to her an experience she had as a kid. Julia tries to rationalize away Terris story, but Terri tells Julia that they all shared the same experience, how can there not be something to what Billy was saying? Julia goes to see her childhood psychologist Dr Crowley, and he just writes her experiences off as stress and fatigue from her cramming for her test to be a psychologist. Terri and Sam start to change. Terri notices that she has a mark on her leg (this mark is similar to Billys), Sam starts to paint black nothingness, type pictures on his easel. Terri goes to the rec. center for a swim, and is attacked by "They". Shes eventually taken away by 2 of "Them". Julia gets a call from Sam. Sams now become like Billy, shaky, because Terri is missing, and he has no clue as to where she could be. He reads some more of Billys diary to Julia. He says that "They" only take away and mark kids who have night terrors, and that when the mark reappears, it means "They" are ready to take you away for good. Sam then shows Julia the mark he has on his hand, and she notices it's similar to Billys. Julia goes to see Dr. Crowley again, and she meets a little girl in the waiting room. Julia asks the girl does she ever have nightmares. Then asks what happens in her dreams, and the girl says "They" come for me. When Julia asks what do they want? and does anything keep "Them" away? The girl responds with to eat me, and lights Then she pulls up her sleeve to reveal she has the same mark as Billy, and Sam did. Sam is attacked by "They" in his apartment. He manages to evade "They" for awhile before he is taken away. Meanwhile, Julia has Paul search her body for the weird mark, with no luck. Later while at home. Julia notices her closet door halfway open, she goes to investigate, and is attacked. Julia runs out of her apartment. As shes running, notices blood coming from her head. She zips into a bathroom nearby and pulls a small bone out of her head, this is what "They" used to mark, and track her all this time. She runs to Pauls, and explains what just happened, She connects the dots about how "They" fear the light, and the blackouts. Paul just thinks shes been over studying, so he gives her a sedative. Paul goes into the next room to call the doctor, Julia is gone when he returns. Julia walks into a deserted subway. A train comes, she gets on. Then it stops, and the lights go out. Julia gets off the train using the back door of the subway car, and is attacked by the night terrors. The train stars back up, and the lights cause the night terros to disappear. Julia is then attacked again, and is pulled down into a tunnel. Using a metal rod, she blocks from being pulled in completely. A red subway light cause "They" to once again disappear. Julia then tries to escape through a grate but they finally grab her and drag her away.Julia fights, and a crew of subway workers show up with flashlights which scare away They. Julia however is still trapped in her mental state and attacks the workers. One of them knocks her out, and she wakes up screaming in a mental institution. Paul, Crowley are there, and tell her she has a concussion. Just as they leave, They strike again, and take Julia away. Crowley searches all over for her. He checks inside a closet, and sees nothing, but Julia who is on the other side, in the creatures dimension, can see him, and she screams "I'm here!". However, he can't see or hear her. She keeps banging on the watery otherwordly barrier which seperates their world from ours. Then the night terrors pounce on her.
Pros:This film had some nice visuals, particularly in the scenes which show how "They"s world looks from the inside. It also had some nice dark, atmospheres, which set the perfect mood for a horror film. The idea of childhood closet monsters was a nice idea for a story as well.
Cons:Too many plotholes, so much is left unexplained. Were given alot to chew on, but then none of the loose ends are wrapped up at all.
Overall:I thought it was a good horror film, that relied more on scenery, dialogue, and overall creep factor to work rather than gore, blood, etc. My theory behind "They", well, I think "They" feed off of terror. They went after kids who had traumatic experiences, or great loss in their lives. I think "They" like to scare, frighten, etc just to drive a person into a terrorfied wreck state. Once they reach their peak of fear, "They" come to take them away, and feed on that fear. I also think the objects they implanted in these kids act as a mindcontrol/tracking device. They cause them to wander/sleepwalk into places where "They" can get them. "They" know where their targets are at all times, but can't get them unless they're in a dark place. Thus, the devices cause the kids to sleepwalk unknowingly into their clutches. "They" It's a movie that make you think, but plotholes and a vague here and there of ideas as to what "They" exactly are, among other things, keep it from being great. Supposedly, a DTV sequel might be made, and would be released along with a SE of the original film on DVD. If that happens, lets just hope the sequel offers more of a clear explanation behind "They".
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