The Others

"Good"

The Others Review


The Others has a great ending -- one that will be spoofed in Scary Movie 4 and referred to in Entertainment Weekly for years to come. It's the reason why people will rush to the theater this summer, spurred on by the word of mouth from friends and co-workers.

What people will forget to tell you is that there's more than 90 minutes of an OK horror movie to watch before a glorious 10 minutes. Take away the ending--which ties the script's agnostic themes together too perfectly--and you get The Haunting, just with superior acting and production values.

The latest horrorfest brings us to the British Isles of 1945, where the repressed, icy Grace, played by Nicole Kidman (Note: Tom Cruise served as an executive producer on the film), cares for her kids Ann and Nicholas (Alakina Mann and James Bentley) in a colossal house, where things are in turmoil. Grace has been told that her husband (Christopher Eccleston), who's fighting in World War II, is missing and unlikely to return. The house's staff has simply vanished. And to top it all off, Ann repeatedly sees visions of another family who she says used to live in the house.

Ann tries to explain what she sees to her dubious mother, who drums Christian doctrine into her children's heads and has an impatient streak. At first, Grace doubts her daughter. But when doors fly open and unknown screams are unleashed, Grace strives (unsuccessfully) to gain control of the situation. Meanwhile, the new housekeeping staff led by the friendly Mrs. Mills (Fionnula Flanagan), acts peculiar. Mrs. Mills tells Ann that she has seen the same visions, and that their presence will lead to some changes in the house.

The movie is propelled by a few highlights, most notably its look. The house is devoid of natural light (the kids are allergic to it), which gives the movie a continually creepy feel. Fog swirls in and out, creating a dreamlike environment. Throughout the movie, Kidman dresses in long, uncomfortable dresses, which scream her repression and cool demeanor. The kids talk in sing-songy English accents, giving the false impression that everything is fine.

The one nuisance is director/screenwriter/composer Alejandro Amenábar's pacing. Amenábar (directing his first English language feature) spends so much time establishing mood and religious symbolism that the movie simmers, instead of boils. There are very few chills until the finale. However, the ending still falls a bit flat because it's so much livelier than the material before it.

Writing this review, I'm reminded of when I first saw The Blair Witch Project two years ago. I loved the idea, but I left the theater feeling a little disappointed. It just wasn't scary enough. I feel the same way about The Others. The film geek inside of me is satisfied, but the Scaredy Cat in me isn't.

The Others DVD is an impressive two-disc set that will make your surround sound system worth the amount you invested in it. The film's sound design is of course the star, with creaks and screams coming from every corner of your living room. Disc two features a number of interesting extras, including a documentary about the skin disease the kids suffer from in the film, a production documentary, and more behind-the-scenes footage.

She sees dead people?



The Others

Facts and Figures

Run time: 104 mins

In Theaters: Friday 10th August 2001

Box Office USA: $96.1M

Box Office Worldwide: $209.9M

Budget: $17M

Distributed by: Miramax Films

Production compaines: Cruise/Wagner Productions, Las Producciones del Escorpión S.L., Sociedad General de Cine (SOGECINE) S.A., Dimension Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
Fresh: 123 Rotten: 25

IMDB: 7.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Grace Stewart, as Charles Stewart, as Anne Stewart, as Nicholas Stewart, as Mr. Edmund Tuttle, as Lydia, Renée Asherson as Old Lady, as Mr. Marlish, as Mrs. Marlish, Alexander Vince as Victor Marlish, Gordon Reid as Assistant, Ricardo López as Second Assistant, as Mrs. Bertha Mills

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.