Review of "Mothman Prophecies, The"

published 16/05/2004 | damncoldnightdotnet
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Pro A thriller that doesn't rely on blood and gore or masked people with knives.
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"Don't Answer The Phone..."

Another Saturday night spent curled up infront of a creepy chiller film on Sky - I really should get out more! This one is The Mothman Prophecies, based on true events, starring Richard Gere and Laura Linney.


- - - Cast - - -
John Klein - Richard Gere. (Pretty Woman, Chicago.)
Mary Klein - Debra Messing. (Will and Grace, Along Came Polly.)
Connie Parker - Laura Linney. (Love Actually, Congo.)
Gordon Smallwood - Will Patton. (Armageddon, Gone In Sixty Seconds.)
Denise Smallwood - Lucinda Jenney. (Practical Magic, Crazy/Beautiful.)
Alexander Leek - Alan Bates. (Gosford Park, The Sum Of All Fears.)
Indrid Cold - Bill Laing. (Debut Film.)


- - - Plot. - - -
Washington Post journalist John Klein (Richard Gere) and his wife Mary (Debra Messing) are the perfect happy couple. It's Christmastime, they're in love and they've just bought their dream home together.
Driving home on Christmas Eve, Mary see's something in the road - a moth-like figure with red eyes, although John doesn't see it. The vision causes her to lose control of the car, they crash, and she a few days later, she dies. All John has left is a book of sketches - her attempt to show what she saw in the road that night.
Two years later. John is driving one night when his car breaks down. He goes to get help and discovers he is in a place called Point Pleasant, West Virginia - 400 miles away from where he was supposed to be going. He has no idea how he got there, or why the villagers think he's been there for the past few nights.
He gets talking to local cop Connie Parker, and discovers there have been some strange happenings in Point Pleasant recently. People have reported seeing strange apparitions, and when Connie shows John a sketch of what people think they've seen, it is the same thing his wife drew before she died - A winged, moth-like 8ft tall creature.
John decides to stay in Point Pleasant and investigate furthur. He begins talking to Gordon Smallwood, a villager who has not only seen the mothman but has regular conversations with it through the plughole in his sink. Gordon thinks it's nothing to be afraid of, it's name is Indrid Cold and it predicts disasters. More than once it tells Gordon a national disaster will happen and the next day it does.
So John must stay and find out, is the mothman - Indrid Cold - good or bad? Does it cause disaster or does it attempt to prevent it? Oh, and is John's dead wife still alive?


- - - My Opinion - - -
The ending ruined it for me. What on earth did that ending have to do with the rest of the film? I can't mention much about it because I'll spoil it for everyone else, but the ending didn't answer any questions, it didn't tie up any loose ends, we never find out who the mothman is or if it's a good thing or a bad thing, and the end had no bearing on the rest of the events in the film.
We never find out whether John's dead wife was still alive or not, was it in his imagination or was it something to do with the mothman? Who was trying to phone him and how come they could still get through when the plug was ripped out of the wall and the phone was in pieces on the floor? How come people can phone John despite having died seven hours previously?
Like I said, the film leaves alot of questions unanswered.

As dark, atmospheric chillers go it could've been worse, although I was so annoyed by the ending that I didn't find it particularly scary or chilling.
You get a feeling that something bad is about to happen throughout this film, although it never does, and a creepy soundtrack just adds to that feeling.
Another thing to make the film eerie is the fact that the mothman is visible in the background of some scenes, although he's never noticed by the characters, the audience see just enough to think something bad is always about to happen.

As I mentioned, this is based on a true story. These events actually happened in Point Pleasant, West Virginia, between November 1966 and December 1967. Sightings of the mothman have been reported around the world. That's another thing that adds to the creepiness of this film, even though names, dates, characters, etc, have been altered.

If you like your films open-ended, where you can decide the answers for yourself, then you'll enjoy this.
If you prefer a film that actually answers half of the questions it creates, definitely one to avoid at all costs.


- - - Other Stuff - - -
Year: 2002.
Cert: 12.
Time Running: 119 Minutes.
Director: Mark Pellington. (Previously directed Arlington Road.)

Buy It: I wouldn't bother, if I were you! I watched it on Sky Movies last night so if you can do that then the next showing is Thursday, May 27th. It's on quite often though, so keep an eye out.
If this does sound like your type of film however, Amazon.co.uk have the DVD for £7.97 and the VHS for £11.69, with Marketplace prices starting at just £1.99.


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Comments on this review

  • ThePolarOne published 20/06/2004
    Great Advice. Cheers.
  • ralfschumacher published 15/06/2004
    I did want to see this before when it was at the cinema but never got round to it. I might rent it or something though. Good review. --Chris--
  • Slayerette published 09/06/2004
    I totally agree this film was really ruined by the end (and how come Richard Gere hasnt had his day lol) its a shame because the books and stories about it are so creepy - nice review on a hard film to explain ;) Angi x
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