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Volume 34
Issue 17
 
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The 'silence' of this film was so loud that one audience member's snores were heard all over the theater
The 'silence' of this film was so loud that one audience member's snores were heard all over the theater
by Rajkhet Dirzhud-Rashid SGN A&E Writer

Silent Hill

Directed by Christophe Gans

Starring: Radha Mitchell,

Sean Bean, Laurie Holden,

Deborah Kara Unger, Alice Krige,

Jodelle Ferland


Now playing

The comment by one of the audience members in the screening I went to for 'Silent Hill' last week, that a man near her was snoring through most of the film, summed up my feelings too. Snore and again, snore. Okay, I didn't snore through it, but I kept waiting for something as exciting as the trailers had been to happen on the screen. Waiting and waiting and waiting. Unfortunately, by the end of the film, (which opened April 21st) not only had I not been rewarded for my waiting, I was pissed that the trailers, once again, had been the only interesting thing about 'Silent Hill', and a lot of what was advertised wasn't even in the screen version.

Taken from a video game by the same title (this I know, because two gaming friends told me), the film starts on a jumpy, manic note, with distraught mother, Radha Mitchell, running through a rocky, urban landscape, looking for her daughter (Jodelle Ferland). She finds the girl at the edge of a cliff, overlooking some kind of abandoned construction site, on the verge of falling into the chasm below. And as the girl, who is sleepwalking, keep saying the words 'Silent Hill', the mother is joined by father, Sean Bean, and they try to make sense of what obviously is an ongoing situation. Thus, we the audience are introduced the whole mystery that is 'Silent Hill', and the ill-advised journey by mother and daughter to find this place-illustrated quite graphically in drawings by the little girl-begins on a dark note.

So, long story short, they do find a deserted town in the middle of nowhere, but not before they have a car crash when the mom tries to avoid a tattered figure, that wanders out into the road in front of them from nowhere. After the mom finally wakes up, she finds her daughter missing and ends up wandering the streets of 'Silent Hill', trying to find her, only to find even more problems and twisted things that chase her willy-nilly all over the place. And, to its credit, the film does resemble some of the scary video games I've watched over my ex and my daughter's shoulders, with Mitchell running everywhere she goes, never getting tired, and looming, evil figures chasing her around every corner.

Even the eventual deaths of the cult of Christian fanatics (led by a stern Alice Krige) are presented like the worst violence in most current video games. But this is a film, and on that level, 'Silent Hill' is just a huge waste of time and an even bigger waste of the talents of Mitchell, Bean and Krige, who have done so much better in past, more exciting films. Save your cash for the video and even then, invite friends over, serve popcorn and prepare to trash this one to death. It deserves it.

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