Sunday, June 18, 2017

The Others

Movie Name: The Others
Year of Release: 2001
Director: Alejandro Amenabar
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Christopher Eccleston, Fionnula Flanagan, Alakina Mann, James Bentley, Eric Sykes, Elaine Cassidy, Renee Asherson
Genre: Mystery, Thriller
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 7
Watch it on Amazon

Director Alejandro Amenabar followed his well received "Open Your Eyes", with his first English speaking feature. The film, which he wrote, follows the story of Grace Stewart and her two children, who are living in a remote house in a somewhat isolated area in 1945. Grace's children have an uncommon ailment, which makes them sensitive to sunlight, and therefore the house always has the drapes drawn, and the children never go outside. The arrival of three servants to the house, coincides with a series of occurrences, all of which makes Grace suspect that there are other individuals in the house. The children mention to Grace there's a little boy by the name of Victor living in the house also, something that frightens and surprises Grace. As the strange occurrences continue Grace progressively realizes what truly lies beneath the house, the servants and her own family.
Alejandro Amenabar is a veritable dynamic talent who has emerged from Spain since the early 2000s. "The Others" was both a commercial and critical success, and it's a testament to his talent and capability to build suspense and mystery progressively, like a yarn that is slowly created. The film builds suspense and surprise, by using shadows and light, and by featuring an effective performance from Nicole Kidman, who more than ever, brings to mind the late Grace Kelly. The relationship between the main characters is just odd enough to add the air of unease that dominates the entire film. It's an intelligent film that frightens more by suggestion, than by relying on gore or gratuitous violence. The cinematography from Javier Aguirresarobe is stunning, as is the production design from Benjamin Fernandez. An entertaining film from an interesting director.