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DVD Talk review of 'Silent Hill'

Old 04-23-06, 10:16 AM
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DVD Talk review of 'Silent Hill'

I read Brian Orndorf's DVD review of Silent Hill at http://www.dvdtalk.com/reviews/read.php?ID=21276 and...
I'd have to disagree quite a bit.

Silent Hill is mostly about atmosphere just like the games. And the atmosphere of the movie is dead on. Incredible sound and strange visuals adds to some truly freaky moments. The first few "horror" scenes were truly horrific something few horror films today even attempt, and they had the theater I was in screaming.

Apparently there was a lot less CGI than what Brian accuses the movie of (the bugs like creatures and fog being the most obvious...but many was good ol fashioned makeup effects). And which Cremaster film did this seem like? That reference seems odd to me (although I have not seen them all and I suppose you could say that everything resembles Cremaster in some way).

While I agree the weakest link is the dialogue especially during the climax and the climax did feel a little bit like Hellraiser (although I don't think this is a negative). The plot MAY be confusing and almost convoluted as they try to over explain the plot in the end, but in fact it's very simple (it does require thought after the film however).

But I mainly disagree because I don't think you can fault a film like this down to 1 1/2 stars. It has MANY elements that manage to work amazingly. It attempted to actually be a horror film of a different vein and managed to succeed in many respects. The weak elements are a shame, especially for those of us that are a fan of at least one of the games (My personal fave is Silent Hill 2)...but would you rather see something like Doom, Tomb Raider 2 or BloodRayne, something TRULY deserving of 1 1/2 stars??

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Old 04-23-06, 11:01 AM
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I saw it twice (got a free ticket for the second time, so I figured why not?). The first theater was creeped out, the second was making jokes through the entire thing. It definitely deflated just about every good scene... honestly, a bad audience can ruin a horror movie more than any other genre.

Of course, the second audience also cheered when Pyramid Head showed up, so it was probably an audience of geeks who already knew what to expect and thus weren't going to be scared no matter what.
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Old 04-23-06, 12:01 PM
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As I am sure he will be glad to tell you, Mr. Orndorf's opinion's are just his own. They seldom reflect those of the rest of the forum. While I have to more or less agree with his take on Silent Hill, I detest that his review places it in the same company as his lackluster review of Thank You For Smoking, which I found one of the more entertaining movies this year. He also referred to the great Brotherhood of the Wolf movie as "pedestrian."

Last edited by Dr. DVD; 04-23-06 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 04-23-06, 12:31 PM
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Brotherhood of the Wolf should have been rated "Spectacular" just for the footage of Monica Belluci.
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Old 04-23-06, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Brian Orndorf
Really? Because the screening I went to, people were laughing. Hard.
The small group of people at the showing I went to were all laughing as well. I couldn't help but laugh at the nurses. The person I went with started singing "Thriller".
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Old 04-23-06, 01:41 PM
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I'm sure the people near you who paid to see the film loved hearing you guys sing. This is why I hate going to the movies now.
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Old 04-23-06, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Seantn
I'm sure the people near you who paid to see the film loved hearing you guys sing. This is why I hate going to the movies now.
agreed, some people just don't deserve to be let out in public places, especially of all places the movie theatre.
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Old 04-23-06, 02:05 PM
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What's interesting is that I remember one individual from here who mentioned going to the recent King Kong movie and flinging wisecracks at it with his buddies. I made a remark about how that was rude behavior and he merely shrugged it off as not mattering because there only about eight other pairs of people in the theater. IMO, that's all the more reason to stay quiet, as these people have the rare chance of enjoying a movie undisturbed.

I went to the very first matinee showing of Silent Hill at my big theater because I knew: A)there would not be as many people as an opening night crowd, B) the people in attendance would most likely be fans of the game and would not try to take away from the experience, C) it would be quiet, and D)all of the above!
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Old 04-24-06, 01:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Dr. DVD
What's interesting is that I remember one individual from here who mentioned going to the recent King Kong movie and flinging wisecracks at it with his buddies. I made a remark about how that was rude behavior and he merely shrugged it off as not mattering because there only about eight other pairs of people in the theater. IMO, that's all the more reason to stay quiet, as these people have the rare chance of enjoying a movie undisturbed.

I went to the very first matinee showing of Silent Hill at my big theater because I knew: A)there would not be as many people as an opening night crowd, B) the people in attendance would most likely be fans of the game and would not try to take away from the experience, C) it would be quiet, and D)all of the above!
i agree 100%. fortunately for me i get private screening for every movie i want to watch, but if i had to pay to see a movie i guarantee it'd be during the early hours or weekday nights monday-thursday if i had to go at night. sometimes when i walk into the theatres i just want to start punching people in the mouth it annoys me so much.
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Old 04-24-06, 01:55 AM
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Originally Posted by BellsOfWar
i agree 100%. sometimes when i walk into the theatres i just want to start punching people in the mouth it annoys me so much.

Amen brother.
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Old 04-24-06, 02:18 AM
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I've never been as vulgar as I have in a movie theater. During Silent Hill I only had to shush people, but one time during a midnight screening of Blue Velvet I actually threatened to beat the crap out of the guy behind me if he didn't shut up. I never act like that anywhere else.
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Old 04-24-06, 08:51 AM
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Silent Hill was the first time for me that they warned people they would kick you out if you didn't turn off you cellphone. I saw them actually do it more than once. This was probably because of it being an advance screening as they also patted us all down.

The crowd was very rowdy before but shut up through most of it other than the guy to the left of me telling his woman any time there was something happening on screen that was in one of the games. So friggin annoying. Commentaries are the worse. That's what sucks about the theater. 900 people can all be behaving but if you are sitting next to a guy that doesn't know how to whisper the experience is ruined.

Oh...and someone brought a baby in...but surprisingly the baby screaming during the scarier parts ADDED to the suspense.
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Old 04-25-06, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Seantn
I'm sure the people near you who paid to see the film loved hearing you guys sing. This is why I hate going to the movies now.
there was no one sitting near us. there were like 8 other people in the theater and no one was sitting anywhere near earshot of us. and the other people in the theater had already set the mood by laughing at everything about the movie until that point. so don't get your panties in a bunch.
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Old 04-25-06, 01:43 PM
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Too late, others in this thread already agree with me.

When you buy your ticket, you are paying to watch the movie, not record a commentary for the DVD. Next time, shut the hell up. Thanks
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Old 04-25-06, 01:51 PM
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there need to be more interactive crowd particaptory films... not!
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Old 04-25-06, 03:50 PM
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Frankly, I think movies like Silent Hill are magnets for wiseasses who want to come to the theater and show how "funny" they can be by making smart aleck remarks through out the film. It doesn't help that many so-called (and self-appointed) critics on Rotten Tomatoes and other internet review sites explicitly or implicitly encourage derision of films they personally don't like. (Yes, I've seen some critics in their reviews actually encourage filmgoers to mock and hoot at some film the critic themselves find particularly worthy of contempt.)

Which also brings me to another point of debate: should critics who actually hate the horror film genre even be encouraged to review such films? I know I have read (lots of) reviews where the reviewer as much as admits he/she thinks the entire genre is garbage, and so then it's no surprise when they trash the particular film they are critiquing. Should the opinion of someone who is basically biased against a type of film from the get-go even matter?

Honestly, I believe that there are critics out there who feel it is their duty to denigrate the entire horror genre, as if the result would be to end the making of these films for which they have such disregard. Mind you, I'm not specifically referring to Brian Orndorff's review, as I didn't detect any particular prejudice in it, but all you have to do is look on Rotten Tomatoes for evidence of what I'm talking about.

As for SH, while it definitely had its flaws, I liked the film a lot, and admired that the filmmakers had a basic respect and affection for the source material, even if they slipped up a bit here and there in translating it to the screen. The film is certainly not worthy of the hatred some "critics" are throwing at it, which I'm sure is more reflective of their own prejudices against a genre film that is based on a video game. What so-called mainstream critic wouldn't jump at a chance to trash a film with that pedigree, to show just how witty and superior he or she is to fans of such a film?

And the audience I saw it with most definitely did not laugh or mock the film at any point, and seemed genuinely into the movie. So don't believe (as some people would have you), that all audiences are telling jokes and laughing throughout the movie. Of course, there are "bad" audiences out there that you might have the misfortune of being in (or more likely, a few bad apples who insist on ruining it for everyone), but I definitely think they are the exception rather than the rule.

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Old 04-25-06, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by garmonbozia
there was no one sitting near us. there were like 8 other people in the theater and no one was sitting anywhere near earshot of us. and the other people in the theater had already set the mood by laughing at everything about the movie until that point. so don't get your panties in a bunch.
Sorry, but that is complete bullshit. You have no idea if everyone within "earshot" do everyone else a favor and shut it. Did EVERYONE laugh? If you are ruining the experience even for one person that is one person too many. Save your commentariy and "funny" jokes for home viewing.

Thanks
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Old 04-27-06, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Sex Fiend

Which also brings me to another point of debate: should critics who actually hate the horror film genre even be encouraged to review such films? I .
Agree with ya. I like how there is "reviewer bias" on some DVD talk reviews. Methinks there should be on the theatrical reviews as well.

I wonder how much critic negativity is given to a film simply because they didnt give critics screenings. Critics seem particularly hateful when that happens irregardless of the film. As if they are owed something and take it out when they don't have a leg up on the general populace.

While many films dont have advance screenings because they dont want reviews on the first weekend (for obvious reasons), there are sometimes good reasons- working right up until the last possible moment is one, not wanting reviewers to put spoilers in their reviews is another.
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Old 04-27-06, 05:34 PM
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I like what they do at JoBlo.com, they have a listing under the review that shows what that critic gave to about 5 or 6 other similar movies, so you can compare it to see if their opinions are anywhere near yours on those films.
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Old 04-28-06, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Seantn
Too late, others in this thread already agree with me.

When you buy your ticket, you are paying to watch the movie, not record a commentary for the DVD. Next time, shut the hell up. Thanks

umm, if you actually paid attention to what I said in my first post.....
I didn't make any comments. I went into the film trying to take it seriously. I am a horror fan. I was just pointing out that the only time I laughed out loud was when the friend I went with leaned over to me and started WHISPERING "Thriller" to me...

I laughed out loud because I was thinking the EXACT same thing when I saw those silly twitching nurses. My friend was not shouting comments at the screen or making a running commentary for others. All the other people in the theater were sitting at least 8 rows behind us except for another group of people sitting diagonal from us across the aisle on the other side of the theater. I would not have been able to hear my friend had I been sitting two seats away let alone where anyone else was sitting.

I was just pointing out that I laughed once. You can't help what makes you laugh. I would have preferred to see this movie in a theater with people that didn't find it funny. It might have been a better experience for me. But I can't blame the people who laughed at every monster scene. They were pretty unscary and ridiculous. They might have been cool, but they were rarely scary, so people laughed at them.
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Old 04-28-06, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by DoubleDownAgain
Sorry, but that is complete bullshit. You have no idea if everyone within "earshot" do everyone else a favor and shut it. Did EVERYONE laugh? If you are ruining the experience even for one person that is one person too many. Save your commentariy and "funny" jokes for home viewing.

Thanks
So in all your life you have never leaned over and whispered something to the person sitting next to you?

and what I said is not complete bullshit. There was no one even sitting remotely close to us. No one save for Clark Kent would have been able to hear what my friend whispered to me in a silent theater let alone while the loud movie was playing. I am not exaggerating when I say there were at least 8 rows of empty seats in all directions. It was really sad to see for an film at 7:20 pm on opening night. and no, I don't know if EVERYONE in the theater was laughing as everyone else in the theater was behind us. Including us there were a total of 10-12 people in the theater.... but it sure sounded like everyone behind us were laughing at the whole movie..... and the point I was making is that any seriousness the movie might have had was lost LONG before I laughed out loud.

My friend made one joking comment to me. It made me laugh out loud. People in this thread are trying to make what I said sound like we are 17-year-olds who went in there to throw popcorn and heckle the screen. Maybe you should keep your own problems with the audiences you share directed at those audiences and not twist what I said into something that was not the case.

All I intended to say in the first place was that the audience I saw the movie with was full of laughers.....and I cited the one time where I myself also laughed.
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Old 04-28-06, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by garmonbozia
The small group of people at the showing I went to were all laughing as well. I couldn't help but laugh at the nurses. The person I went with started singing "Thriller".
Originally Posted by garmonbozia
So in all your life you have never leaned over and whispered something to the person sitting next to you?

and what I said is not complete bullshit. There was no one even sitting remotely close to us. No one save for Clark Kent would have been able to hear what my friend whispered to me in a silent theater let alone while the loud movie was playing. I am not exaggerating when I say there were at least 8 rows of empty seats in all directions. It was really sad to see for an film at 7:20 pm on opening night. and no, I don't know if EVERYONE in the theater was laughing as everyone else in the theater was behind us. Including us there were a total of 10-12 people in the theater.... but it sure sounded like everyone behind us were laughing at the whole movie..... and the point I was making is that any seriousness the movie might have had was lost LONG before I laughed out loud.

My friend made one joking comment to me. It made me laugh out loud. People in this thread are trying to make what I said sound like we are 17-year-olds who went in there to throw popcorn and heckle the screen. Maybe you should keep your own problems with the audiences you share directed at those audiences and not twist what I said into something that was not the case.

All I intended to say in the first place was that the audience I saw the movie with was full of laughers.....and I cited the one time where I myself also laughed.
So singing = whispering?

Whisering is one thing, but from you orignal post it sure in hell doesn't sound like whispering to me. Laughing out loud loud in a comedy is one thing but laughing out loud over and over again in a movie that isn't supposed to be funny is rude IMO. You may think your funny, your firends might think you are funny but I would bet that most people around you don't.

In truth you could have been "whispering" and not have bothered anyone at all, only you know for sure because no one else here was in the same theatre. But I've seen my fair share of obnoxious behavior at the movie theatre to know that they don't care that they are being obnoxious or they just don't care. If this wasn't the case in your situation then you have my apologies. Like most people here I can't people that don't know how to act in a theatre and i ma (or may not) jumped the gun. But if you go back and read your first post it sure sounds to me that "singing Thriller" in a theatre would qualify as obnoxious behavior.
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Old 04-28-06, 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by DoubleDownAgain
So singing = whispering?

If this wasn't the case in your situation then you have my apologies. Like most people here I can't people that don't know how to act in a theatre and i ma (or may not) jumped the gun. But if you go back and read your first post it sure sounds to me that "singing Thriller" in a theatre would qualify as obnoxious behavior.
Yes, my friend did sing a few bars of Thriller, but it was done with a whispered voice. I didn't think of the two terms as being mutually exclusive. No one heard her but me. Sorry if I was not clear enough in my first post, I didn't expect anyone would make an issue of it.

I agree it's unfortunate when an audience laughs through a horror film. I would have preferred to see this film with a more serious audience. A couple people laughing can really change the entire experience. But I cannot fault the people behind us who started laughing at all the monsters.... many of them were just ridiculous.... I really can't see how that janitor in the bathroom could strike fear into anyone. If anything, I blame the filmmakers. The movie just didn't work. After one really crappy monster that had the audience laughing.....it's very difficult to take any of the rest seriously.
No one laughed at the lava monsters as they were the first monsters we saw, but after that silly thing in the bathroom, all bets were off. The only monster I found effective at all in the film was Pyramidhead. He was actually quite impressive. It was also hard not to chuckle and shake your head in disbelief at the horrible acting by the cop woman either. Can't blame people for laughing at bad acting or really insipid plot devices (there were several laughs when the husband walked into that room and the bos saying "Silent Hill Police Records" was right there staring him in the face). I blame the filmmakers for making a bad film......
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Old 07-12-06, 03:12 PM
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this movie is hated by a majority now but hopefully when the DVD becomes a best seller people will learn to love it like the minority of us did. and to the genuis that said that was riding the movie for Sean Bean not seeing the records. it was dark in the room so naturally he couldn't see anything

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