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Scary Movie Reviews
The Messengers
Release Date: February 2nd, 2007 (wide)
Length: 1 Hr. 24 Min.
Rated: PG-13 for mature thematic material, disturbing violence and terror.
Distributor: Sony Pictures Releasing
Starring: Kristen Stewart, Dylan McDermott, Penelope Ann Miller, John Corbett, Dustin Milligan

Directed by: Oxide Pang, Danny Pang
Produced by: Joe Drake, Nathan Kahane, William Sherak
Written by: Mark Wheaton, Stuart Beattie, Albert Torres (II), Todd Farmer

Official Website


Reviewed by Scott Jeffries
Reviewer Rating:


( The Messengers )

Imagine that you move to a new place, take your whole life to another foreign land and when you try to settle down, there are weird instances which build up into horrifying specters and ghosts that are constantly hounding you and only you. Everywhere you turn, you see them- staring at you with the black pools from hell, trying to get into your mind and your soul. It sure scares the hell out of me. I probably wonít sleep tonight thinking about this.

The Messengers is a movie in which people experience this- the whole bit and the worst part is no one believes. The story is about a family which relocates from Chicago to North Dakota. This is because of a terrible incident involving the daughter Jess (Kristen Stewart) and Ben (Evan and Theodore Turner). The father, Roy (Dylan McDermott) decides that the family will be way better off in the countryside and so the big move. Even his wife Denise (Penelope Ann Miller) seems to think this is a great idea. They settle down in this old country style house and start a new business of sunflower farming.

Because of the terrible incident, Ben is traumatized and does not speak. He is mute. Along with that, he is the first one to see the unearthly beings that live amongst them. Soon, Jess too begins to have strange experiences and finally starts seeing horrible, unimaginably scary forms that are teeming from the house. When she tries telling her parents, they donít believe her. Soon, Roy hires an extremely creepy man, Burwell (John Corbett) as a farm hand. The incidents in the house become more and more intense and because of the elders ignoring their childrensí pleas and voices, they all head to a scary end.

Some might find the film predictable, but there is a lot more to the film. Asian horror is a totally different style from your regular American slasher friendly horror flicks. The former is more silent, psychological- something that creeps slowly towards you and then slowly goes on to consume you till you scream out loud inside your head. Itís a totally mental thing and this method has been employed in this movie very well by the directors- Danny and Oxide Pang. The whole kick about this film is that though you might know what is going to happen in the end or the direction the film is going in, it still scares the daylights out of you. The scary part is the process and the events that take you towards a probably predictable end; not just the end by itself.

The location chosen is diabolical, in the sense that the farm and country life is so tranquil, but amidst this tranquility, there are horrifying experiences that take place. The disassociation shown between the family members- the militant daughter, a mute toddler, the silent wife and the troubled father- it all makes you feel the tension in the film, makes you feel uncomfortable. The cinematography is excellent and makes you feel the horror.

All in all, maybe not your regular horror flick, but is that not the point, the very fact that itís not your regular flick, but something different and creepy?

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