THE OTHERS
 

Directed by Alejandro Amenábar. USA. 2001.


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How many of you are sick of those typical Hollywood horror films that are filled with excess blood and gore, bad scripts, mediocre acting? I know I sure am. When I saw this movie I was pleasantly surprised about how the overall mood sets the tone for the creepiness of the movie. 

From Alejandro Amenábar, the director of the original Vanilla Sky (Abre los ojos) comes The Others. The movie is set during the end of the second world war, on the small island of Jersey. It tells the story of Grace Stewart (Nicole Kidman (Moulin Rouge, The Hours) and her two children who hire a mysterious group of servants. The two children (Alakina Mann, James Bentley) happen to have a rare disease which makes them photosensitive. They cannot encounter more light than from a small lantern/candle or else they will become very sick. The family lives in a huge eerie mansion, which Grace thinks is haunted. The servants act strangely, Grace's children think she's crazy, strange noises and whispers come from the house, and a huge twist at the end will leave you in awe at the excellent filmmaking of Amenábar, who not only directed the movie, he also wrote the screenplay, and composed the score for it. Talk about a man who tries to keep busy.

No gore is used in the movie, but none is needed whatsoever. The acting by the entire cast is phenomenal. Not only by Nicole Kidman, who completely nails the role, but also by the two child stars. They were incredible and believable as Anne and Nicholas Stewart. Good supporting performances also arise by Fionnula Flanagan, Eric Sykes, and Elaine Cassidy. All of the actors help make the film scary, along with the atmosphere of the small foggy island, the dim-lighting of the dark mansion due to the photosensitive children, the general quietness, and the score of the film. 

So what do we get out of spending about 100 minutes with The Others ? A great story with an incredible twist which can rival that of "The Sixth Sense" any day. Genuine scares, fantastic acting, and a reason to see more of this little-known director's work.   

Catherine.
 
 
 
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