Review of "Mothman Prophecies, The"

published 20/02/2006 | arnoldhenryrufus
Member since : 08/07/2005
Reviews : 137
Members who trust : 298
About me :
I will be back one day soon, just need to find more time, working long hours - Lyn x
Pro Atmospheric, True Story, Creepy
Cons No language choices, only English available.
very helpful
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Characters / Performances
Special Effects

"Have you seen one."

Eye witness sketch of the Mothman

Eye witness sketch of the Mothman

~~ The Mothman Prophecies ~~

I like to write about things that I have strong opinions for, whether I strongly like it or dislike it. Sometimes it takes me quite a while to get inspired on what to write about, but just lately I have discovered that I really enjoy writing about Movies and watching the DVD extras that I would normally dismiss.

Today my husband agreed to us both watching a DVD and I got to choose, so I chose The Mothman Prophecies, which is a film I had seen and enjoyed before, but could never get my hubby to watch it. I will state now that I enjoyed it, but he hated it, as we have totally different tastes. He does prefer action movies and this is really a thinking movie, it is a film that you have to watch, it is drawn out, but it needs to be to create the right atmosphere and build up the tension.

~~ The Facts ~~

The Mothman Prophecies is a film based on the book of the same name by John A. Keel, published in 1975, the book is the true story of events that occurred in a small town in West Virginia, called Point Pleasant between 1966 and 1967.

So what are The Mothman Prophecies? Over a 13 month span over 100 eye witnesses reported strange phenomena over the town of Point Pleasant, reporting UFO sightings, strange lights in the sky, many reports of red hypnotic eyes. From a collection of reports the description of the Mothman is up to 8ft tall, red hypnotic eyes, bat like wings that seem to glide rather than flutter. He was wider than a man and had human like legs, also its skin is a murky colour either dark grey or brown in appearance. But, this description is made up from many eye witness reports and not one person saw exactly the same thing.

The 'creature' was dubbed The Mothman by the local press, as it seems to fit a near description of a character in the TV series Batman which was running at the time.

But the fact that the 40 year old bridge collapsed and 46 towns' people were killed cannot be dismissed.

This vision 'The Mothman' appears through out the world, usually just before some major loss of life, through some kind of disaster. There have been many world wide reports.

~~ The Cast ~~

Richard Gere - plays John Klein a journalist for the Washington Post, he is also our main character throughout the movie. You watch John go from a loving husband, to a grieving husband. From a fairly logical and rational reporter to a nervous wreck wrestling with what he is seeing and what he believes.

Laura Linney - Connie Mills - she plays the local Police Sergeant in the town of Point Pleasant, along with Gere, she is the second main character. Connie is John's side kick, she introduces him to the towns people and helps him get the eye witness accounts, she is also the voice of reason and tries to make John see things from a different light.

There are many other actors making up the movie, but to me the film is focused on the above two.

~~ The Film ~~

We start off with Richard Gere receiving what appears to be a strange phone call and dismissing it. We move along to the offices of his work at the Washington Post and him leaving to join his lovely wife Mary to go house hunting.

The couple are portrayed as wonderfully happy and very excited about the prospect of buying there new home, there are a couple of little clues referring to moths etc and strange senses, which are dismissed.

The mood still being light they head off home after saying they will take the house, on the route home something scares Mary and causes her to crash the car.

We skip to the hospital to John sitting by Mary's bedside, she wakes and sees a vision of the 'thing' that made her crash the car, Mary asks John if he saw it too, but he didn't. Sadly, shortly after this they discover that she has a brain tumour, the doctors do all they can but cannot save her.

John distraught at the loss of his wife is packing away her belongings when an orderly comes in and says that his wife new she was going to die, she had drawn angels. John looks at the note book and sees the pictures that are demonic, black and red, these are to be the first pictures and first descriptions of the 'Mothman'.

The scene is set and we jump two years and John Klein sets off on route to Richmond, 1½ hours into his journey he finds himself broken down and discovers that he has travelled 400 miles in the wrong direction, impossible, but true. Even more strange he has no recollection of the journey.

He knocks on a farmers' door only to be dragged inside by what seems to be a mad man, shouting that this is the 3rd night running that he has knocked his door at 2.30 in the morning. The police are called and Connie arrives, who talks to the farmer and takes John back into the village to stay at the local motel.

The background music has started to get eerie and builds up the tension, the colouring and filming is dark and foreboding, making you alert and waiting to jump out of your seats.

John is now curious as to what has been going on and with Connie's help he speaks to other villagers and hears their stories. More strange things happen and they start happening to John, he starts getting strange phone calls, which he tapes. John goes out of town to get the tapes checked, where he discovers that the voice he has recorded is not human.

The film continues with very strange phenomena occurring throughout, people coming up to him with their precognitive dreams of disasters and huge loss of life, then the discovery that these dreams are coming true.

The haunting music builds on the tension; Richard Gere is a fantastic actor and really plays the part very well, especially as he starts to go a little crazy with it all.

He chases all the facts and finds an old professor who had wrote a book about the 'Mothman' (played by Alan Bates), who eventually tells John what this knowledge did to him, how it cost him his family and put him in a mental institute for four years. Did this information stop John, or did he continue to be tipped over the edge (ha, not telling, watch the film).

It all builds up to the climax of the Silver Bridge collapsing, (sorry I won't tell you who lives and who doesn't). This is done steadily, not rushed, in a way it is like slow motion as you watch the bolt give out and you watch the suspension wires swing. (Unlike some movies where is it fast action and over in seconds).

~~ DVD Extras ~~

Scene Selection: Option to pick one of the 20 chapters to view.

Subtitles: This was very surprising only an English option here, no choice of subtitles or languages.

Special Features: Here we have a drop down menu of choices.

Search for the Mothman: This is a 45 minute documentary recalling the true story behind the Mothman Prophecy and the events in Point Pleasure between 1966 and 1967. There are interviews with eye witnesses, clips from actual TV News footage from the era and of Silver Bridge when it collapsed.

This is a documentary that is worth watching if you enjoyed the film, apart from verifying facts from the movie; it also gives you facts that were not in the film. Seeing the black and white footage was quite good too.

Other facts from around the world were given in this documentary and a web site address which is regularly updated with new sightings - .

Theatrical Trailer: An advertising feature showing clips of various scenes throughout the movie to entice you into the cinemas to watch it (approx 2mins long).

First Look Special: This is the best of the trailers on here and the one to watch. It starts off with Richard Gere speaking about the film, showing flashes from the movie, Mark Pellington the Director tells us what he thinks of his movie and what he tried to get across, describing it as a Physiological Mystery.

We then move on to more short interviews all around 2-3 minutes each, until we come the section where they describe how they built a replica bridge to the one that collapsed in 1967 and how they filmed it. I always find these bits really interesting; it is fascinating to hear them explain how they managed to get to the finished result you see in the movie.

This section lasted approx 15 minutes.

Teaser Trailer: Very fast snippets from the movie with words flashing across the scene - 'IF YOU CAN'T SEE IT', 'ARE YOU SAFE'. This is all part of the hype to build the movie up.

Interviews: There are four interviews in this section, listed individually so you can watch them in any order.

Richard Gere interview lasts 12 minutes. He talks about his feelings about the film and his character in the movie.

Will Patton who played Gordon Smallwood, the farmer that grabbed John in the early part of the story. He went on to be one of the main eye witnesses, hearing voices, having predictions and talking to 'The Mothman'. His interview lasted 5 minutes.

Laura Linney, like Richard she was interviewed about herself, what she thought of the film and her character, she was on for 8 minutes.

Finally we have Mark Pellington the Director, his enthusiasm for his movie came through in his interview, he talked about the direction side of things and how they added bits to the movie to increase the tension and make it more traumatic. Like scenes with Richard Gere in his motel room, during one of these scenes they have John (Richard Gere); turn over in his bed to find the ghost of his dead wife smiling at him. His interview took 10 minutes.

Featurette: This was the first six minutes of the First Look Special which is also listed under the special features.

~~ My Opinion of the Extras: ~~

It is disappointing that it only comes in English, not that I would understand any other language, but there are many who would.

Out of the Special Features section I found the First Look Special and The Interviews the best to watch, all the rest were really irrelevant and just cut out sections of these two. Saying that though I cannot dismiss Search for the Mothman, seeing actual footage of the original true story was really fascinating to watch. Seeing the real Silver Bridge story on the news and clippings from newspapers is most definitely worth looking at.

~~ My Opinion on the Movie ~~

I have to say that I have really enjoyed watching this film, it is spooky and a true story, that's two things I really enjoy. If you like the X-files you will enjoy this film as it is done very much in the same style as that.

Like I mentioned previously my husband found it a bit slow for his liking, where as I didn't because it is a thinking film and has to be watched to follow the thread, you can't nip out for a quick cuppa and pick it back up again when you come back into the room.

So if you are into the supernatural, into strange phenomena and the unexplained then this is definitely for you. If you want action, violence, sex and bad language, then rent out the Long Kiss Goodnight, (hubby loves this one lol), and there is none of that in this film.

Remember it is based on a true story and the way the director has used memory flashes to enhance the mood, flash backs and the uses of colour and shadows, really plays with your mind. In the end that's what makes it a good psychological mystery, what gets you wondering wow, did this really happen.

If you are still with me thank you for getting this far, hope you enjoyed reading it, and if you do get to see the movie I hope you enjoy watching it a much as I did.

Thanks Lyn x

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Comments on this review

  • LiveMusicLoverLyn published 10/11/2017
    I've read the book and from this description the essence maybe lost in the film. Nice review.
  • addgraph published 06/08/2011
    got my film for tonight, thanks
  • Essexgirl2006 published 07/07/2011
    I saw this at the cinema, a good thriller as I recall.
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