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Overall Rating
3.25

Awesome: 20.45%
Worth A Look: 23.86%
Just Average: 23.3%
Pretty Crappy25%
Sucks: 7.39%

11 reviews, 110 user ratings


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Silent Hill
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by Dawn Taylor

"'Watching 'Silent Hill' is very much like playing a computer game.'"
2 stars

Like a big, glossy coffee table book of artfully morbid photographs, "Silent Hill" dazzles with its deliciously creepy visuals. But, like a coffee table book, that's all there is – there's precious little story, the characters are one-dimensional, and other than the act of flipping pages, there's nothing to involve the viewer.

Having recently watched a DVD of 2005's "The Dark," I was struck by a strong sense of dejá vu.Both films star pretty blond actresses (in "The Dark" it was Maria Bello, here it's Radha Mitchell) who must battle evil forces in a dark alternate world to save their daughters. Both dark alternate worlds feature little girls who are dead ringers for the blond's missing child. Both blonds are married to Sean Bean, who runs around in Real Time looking concerned. The similarities are so uncanny, in fact, that one can't help but wonder what Bean thought when he read the scripts. ("Hey, I can get paid twice for playing the exact same part in the exact same movie!" is my guess.)

Like an any self-respecting geek, I've played my fair share of computer games. I even bought Silent Hill, as it came so highly recommended as a good, scary adventure scenario. I couldn't play it, though, because I needed a new video card for my aging PC. (Not that my needing an upgrade is germane to my review, but it'll go a ways toward establishing my dorkiness.)

Anyway. Watching "Silent Hill," the movie, is very much like playing a computer game. More precisely, it's like watching someone else play a computer game. Because while you have no control over what the characters do, you still follow along doing the keyboard commands in your head. Example: A body, crucified with barbed wire in a bathroom stall, has something in its mouth. (Reach between the wire and take the thing out of the mouth, you think. That's a clue.) Mitchell, as blond mom Rose, dutifully reaches in and takes the thing out of the mouth. (Look at it!) Rose sees that whatever it is, it's from a hotel. (Go find the hotel!) Rose goes to the hotel, where she discovers one of her daughter's drawings in the registry slot for room 111. (Go to room 111!) Rose finds rooms 109 and 113, but there's no room 111. There is, however, a huge painting on the wall. (Use the knife in your inventory to slash the painting!) Rose finds the door to room 111 behind the painting.

Etcetera.

Mitchell spends the first third of the film doing little more than running around yelling her daughter's name which, as her daughter's name is Sharon, led me to imagine a better, funnier movie starring Ozzy Osbourne. "Sharon! There's faceless bleeping nurses blocking the bleeping hallway!" my alternate Ozzy would cry. "Sharon! I can't make it through the bleeping courtyard because of all the bleeping ratty roach creatures attacking me!" he'd yell. Of course Sharon, being the smart one, would calmly tell him to reload the game and try again from his last saved position, and he'd solve the puzzle in three or four tries.

With a script by Roger Avary ("Pulp Fiction," "Killing Zoe") and direction by Christophe Gans ("Brotherhood of the Wolf") this film has a pedigree that promises something extra-extra-special. But Avary and Gans make the most fundamental mistake common to bad horror flicks – they don't make us care about the characters, so we don't give a damn what happens to them. We know that Rose/Mitchell and Christopher/Bean are married and that Sharon is adopted. That's the extent of their backstory -- really, they're all just bodies running around, picking things up, and going from room to room to find new monsters, just like in a video game. So no matter how gruesomely creative the monsters are, there's no suspense. There's no fear, which renders the entire exercise moot. Monsters roam the hallways like in any good video game, but there's no explanation as to what they are or why they're there, and there's never even a moment's doubt that our heroine will traverse every ghoul-filled corridor and escape every knife-wielding Thing with Another Thing on Its Head ... so who cares?

Pretty as it is – and oh, the visuals are terrific – "Silent Hill" is an abject failure as a horror film, offering gorgeous Clive Barker-inspired art direction run amuck with nothing actually scary going on. Two full hours of this ends with a plot resolution that makes absolutely no sense whatsoever, making the whole effort a sad waste of everyone's time.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=14326&reviewer=413
originally posted: 04/21/06 16:52:43
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User Comments

3/13/17 morris campbell beautiful but boring 1 stars
10/06/11 Kevin Breece beautiful movie. probably the best game-to-movie adaptation i have seen. 5 stars
6/14/11 Allen Stays true to the franchise, right down to the "What the HELL just happened?" at the end. 5 stars
5/15/11 stephen nettles Awesome 5 stars
10/01/10 bored mom This film lacks the first two games' truly subtle, carefully thought-out sensibilities. 3 stars
8/19/09 Jo Not played the games but movie was good. Especially now i get the ending! roll on movie 2!! 4 stars
12/01/08 Jojo i thought it was bad ass, but i love the games 4 stars
11/27/08 Jon C. My Full Review (fix spaces) www0.epinions.com /review/mvie_mu-1156476/content_228082421380 4 stars
10/09/08 Andyyyy its ok as a movie, nothing to the game, the plot is %$#!ed up, explains nothin 3 stars
8/26/08 Shaun Wallner Bloody Awesome!!! 5 stars
7/13/08 Pyrix An interesting horror piece, certainly better than most game-to-movie adaptations 4 stars
6/15/08 PAUL SHORTT NO THRILLS ON THIS HILL 1 stars
5/10/08 Ryan If you don't understand the ending use common sense, the haze outside her house, 4 stars
4/25/08 Karrie Millheim Scared me big time! Horror lovers are gonna love this one 5 stars
3/16/08 Tosh its quite good as an horror movie, more amusing than scary. loved the open end. 4 stars
4/17/07 shyguy Great casting of Dahlia and Cybil, but a REALLY stupid plot 2 stars
3/19/07 Anthony G Best video game to movie adaptation ever made, still not THAT great overall. 4 stars
3/08/07 cokehead wasn't scarry, just weird. what a piece of shit. 2 stars
3/08/07 johnnyfog I liked Cybil. But otherwise, pointless 2 stars
2/27/07 Beau Greatly made, superb performances but a dull plot and it got silly towards the end 3 stars
2/04/07 Mark Helling not great, but its so extremely well made u wont care. not very scary, but has its moments 4 stars
2/01/07 Abs Preety good movie.Music set the scary tone for the whole film,but last 20min was a letdown 4 stars
1/10/07 Jake This movie pretty much just didn't do anything but such 2 stars
1/09/07 del Roger Avary fucked this up BAD. 3 stars
10/23/06 Indrid Cold Good screen translation, but still the movie doesn't even approach the game's brilliance. 3 stars
10/23/06 AJ Muller mood and visuals make it work; operates on 'nightmare logic' and is quite effective at it 5 stars
10/22/06 nie nie it so reflect the game. better than resident evil. i love it (wit some exception) 4 stars
10/17/06 GC Watch it for the visuals..nothing more..and not scary...plot dumb/characters lame 3 stars
10/17/06 Marvin Schulte It's a punch in the face of every single fan of the games. 1 stars
10/16/06 John Best game to movie ever! But you should play the game before seeing the movie. it helps. 5 stars
10/09/06 Homuncolos U shouldnt judge a movie on if its scary, since who would get scared just from a movie? 5 stars
10/08/06 Jim If you play the games, you'll love it; if not, you'll be just as baffled as my wife was. 5 stars
10/06/06 Clive Was A Good Film But I Havent Played The Game...This May Be Why I was Confused At The Ending 4 stars
10/04/06 pete.chesworth great game but glad I did not pay to see the movie. 2 stars
9/30/06 Randy if you didnt understand the movie your an idiot. get some common sence and watch it again. 4 stars
9/29/06 Bob Smith T 4 stars
9/23/06 Nicole This movie was exellent , but I did'nt understand the ending. 4 stars
9/18/06 daveyt I enjoyed it, liked the ending, visuals were great. Not exactly a classic, but not that bad 4 stars
9/16/06 hector if you didnt PLAY THE GAME you wont UNDERSTAND IT so you wont like 5 stars
9/14/06 Sophie Beats most Hollywood horrors! 5 stars
9/12/06 Ian pickering Mint film but the cop is a dick 5 stars
9/10/06 Cindy Brown didn't make much sense, yet I couldn't stop watching it 3 stars
9/06/06 Albert not true to the game, and about one tenth as scary,save your money,buy the game`s. 1 stars
9/05/06 HGTV fanatic great scary monsters, ending sucked, is they dead or just in a different dimesnion? 4 stars
9/02/06 HILARY I wasn't impressed. i got bored. i was confused at the end. it didnt scare me. lol.. 3 stars
9/01/06 ES Boring, gets interesting, gets retarded and then leaves you wondering what the ending means 2 stars
8/28/06 Casper I liked it - creatures were creepy, town was well-conceived, Rahda made this film work 4 stars
8/27/06 cindy interesting movie 4 stars
8/26/06 dorena ware whew, glad it was over. 3 stars
8/25/06 wanda mahoney it was very good movie, i like the eneding 5 stars
8/25/06 Richard Jojola This movie was awesome 5 stars
8/25/06 purplerose decent if you have played the games! 4 stars
8/25/06 Charles bundy I thought the film was teriffic, non-staop horror! 5 stars
8/24/06 Phillip Akers Very Grat movie best transofor mation of a game into a movie and most of all the gore 5 stars
8/24/06 LP The movie is suck but I even sucker wasting $4.90 at a local video store 1 stars
8/23/06 matt twisted, grotesque and sick as fuck 5 stars
8/23/06 Stephanie I DONT GET THE ENDING .. IM COMFUSED-- I THOUGHT IT WAS PRETTY WORTHLESS 1 stars
8/16/06 Ian K. The best game-movie adaption known with brill visuals and sounds to draw you in 5 stars
8/01/06 dan a strange but rather good film 4 stars
7/28/06 Daniel This is one of the best movies I have seen in months. Play the game if you wanna enjoy it! 5 stars
6/29/06 Gretchen Seitz Starts off promisingly, but turns into psychobabble. 1 stars
6/24/06 Elix ONLY and ONLY for anyone who have played Silent hill 1,2 or 3 4 stars
6/11/06 Mike First movie I've EVER walked out on! So ridiculous and STUPID. TOTAL WASTE OF TIME!!! 1 stars
6/04/06 Huismijt Nice little movie! Go see it if you're a fan of the series. Don't take it so seriously!! 3 stars
5/29/06 Anthony G As a video game to movie adaptation it was great! As a normal movie? Not so much... 5 stars
5/19/06 rosebud cybill is the new lesbian icon 5 stars
5/17/06 Alfred Guy Good creatures, but uneven as a whole. 3 stars
5/15/06 Ashley I loved the movie, I just didn't like the end. It left too much open ended. 4 stars
5/15/06 allie most horrible movie i've seen since blair witch project! 1 stars
5/09/06 San Lamar go see it! 5 stars
5/08/06 DANNY I THOUGHT IT WAS PRETTY GOOD AS FAR AS THE SPL EFFECTS WENT, CREEPY & WEIRD BUT NOT SCARY 4 stars
5/08/06 Tranquil Made for fans of the series, good visuals and recreation of some aspects. 4 stars
5/08/06 ryan good movie tells how the girl and wife got to be lost there and the before to when the husf 5 stars
5/06/06 Charlene Javier A bummer for fans of the game... 2 stars
5/05/06 Chris Buchanan Fan of the games. Fan of the movie. It's not your typical game-based movie: It doesn't suck 5 stars
5/05/06 matthew flynn a little too ove explained in some areas and under in others 4 stars
5/03/06 mandisa robinson the movie was good 4 stars
5/03/06 David I've seen scarier things at a five year old's birthday party, what a waste of two hours.... 1 stars
5/01/06 Mase Like watchign someone else play a barely comprhensible video game. Avoid!! 1 stars
5/01/06 Brandi Robertson The movie is hard to follow, drawn out, weird, and too long. 3 stars
5/01/06 chris f very tense and scary movie exellent!!! 5 stars
5/01/06 Patrick B Hey Im from W. Va and we have very few towns that look like "close to hell" 3 stars
5/01/06 Josh Standlee Scary as Hell! I won't be able to sleep right for at least a week! 5 stars
4/29/06 Sergey Konyshev I was so lost at the end, please explain how the wife and husband are in different worlds? 2 stars
4/28/06 Laz Moreland Scary and awesome! 5 stars
4/27/06 jimmy saville the longest, most boring film ever. Id ask for a refund if I could 1 stars
4/27/06 Jen Wilson Not good- would never reccomend this movie to anyone 1 stars
4/27/06 Farron Watson Some of the most disturbing imagery I've ever seen. Agony as a visual art form. 4 stars
4/26/06 Jon A laudable addition to the Silent Hill name, but not without flaws. They should make SH2! 4 stars
4/25/06 Vikki Tries too hard, but appropriately frightening! 4 stars
4/24/06 Troy G Changed cult from the game from summoner of deamon to opposition of the deamon. 4 stars
4/24/06 Anthony G They did pyramid head very well, created a great vibe, ending was lacking. 4 stars
4/24/06 elliot comparing this stylish film to plan 9 proves some of the critics here are idiots. 5 stars
4/24/06 victoria schall answer a question on Silent Hill 3 stars
4/24/06 Josh Haberman A Silent Hill Fan must see! 4 stars
4/24/06 BrianWilly Scary and gory fun. 5 stars
4/23/06 :) FINALLY!..A game movie that doesn't suck! 5 stars
4/23/06 Greyjack Cool visuals, but needed more Pyramid Head. 3 stars
4/23/06 MorallySound The movie makes sense if you dig through all the layers of ploy. Use your brain. 5 stars
4/22/06 matt Not quite what I was expecting, but pretty cool 4 stars
4/22/06 Adrian It's pretty. Really pretty. But mindless as well. 4 stars
4/22/06 The Talking Elbow Appreciated quite well as art. 5 stars
4/22/06 mike awesome 5 stars
4/22/06 Eevil Wolfie Visuals are nightmarish when they are there but the story seems to drag unnessisarily. 3 stars
4/22/06 bizenya it blew my fucking mind. 5 stars
4/22/06 Ole Man Bourbon It was pretty fun, but also kind of like a film version of a run-on sentence. 3 stars
4/21/06 Toilet Bowl Well-made, intelligent, scary - might not be for everyone 5 stars
4/21/06 ducka The best videogame adaptation ever 5 stars
4/21/06 KingNeutron I enjoyed it, even tho I never played the game. Genuinely scary in parts. 4 stars
4/21/06 Bunuel People confused by surrealism need not apply. 4 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  21-Apr-2006 (R)
  DVD: 22-Aug-2006

UK
  N/A

Australia
  31-Aug-2006



[trailer] Trailer


Directed by
  Christophe Gans

Written by
  Roger Avary

Cast
  Radha Mitchell
  Sean Bean
  Laurie Holden
  Deborah Kara Unger
  Kim Coates
  Tanya Allen



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