Silent Hill - Videogame Film Review - Film Month Print E-mail
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Written by Thomas "CigDangle" Balistreri   
Wednesday, 12 September 2007

[OpEd]

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This is the third film I’ve reviewed this month, and it is easily the worst one of the three.  That’s not to say it's a horrible movie, in fact, it does many things right.

First, the screenplay was written by Roger Avary , who helped pen parts of classic films like Reservoir Dogs, True Romance, and Pulp Fiction.  Believe it or not, this screenplay does a reasonable job of following the story of the first Silent Hill game.

Flashlight

If you’ve read my personal videogame top 10 list , then you may have a sense of just how important this was to me.  While there are some distinct departures from the source material, I was content with the way the story panned out.  Just like the game, Sharon is lost just outside Silent Hill after a motor vehicle accident.  The difference is that Rose Da Silva, Sharon’s adoptive mother is driving the SUV (in the game, it was a young girl’s father).  Rose intentionally brings Sharon to discover why she is having nightmares about the town.  For me, it was akin to reading a book, and then going to see the movie, only to realize…the book was better.

End of the Road

Second, Silent Hill offers a dash of star power – Sean Bean, star of GoldenEye, National Treasure, and the Lord of the Rings Trilogy.  Bean plays Christopher Da Silva, Rose’s husband and Sharon’s adoptive father, who objects to the trip to Silent Hill.  Christopher stays home, and even tries to persuade Rose to return.  After it is evident she will not be returning soon, Mr. Da Silva travels to Silent Hill in search of Rose. 

Cop and Dad

Bean excels in this small role, but poor dialogue puts a damper on the performance.  Bean is also forced to play opposite Kim Coates who plays Officer Thomas Gucci, a cop privy to the secrets the small town holds.  While I realize the dialogue delivered by Coates is equally bad at times, he is still one of the worst actors I’ve seen in many years.  His poor performance literally “took me out" of the movie.

And as if Coates wasn’t bad enough, the casting director felt the need to include Laurie Holden, an equally bad actress, also playing a cop.  And don’t forget Tanya Allen, who plays Anna.  This “talented” actress landed a starring role in the “blockbuster film”, Firestorm: Last Stand at Yellowstone (Yes, there was actually a sequel to Firestorm.)

Creepy

One of the standout actors is Alice Krige, who stars as Christabella, the leader of the religious cult in Silent Hill.  Her performance rings of Piper Laurie, who played Carrie’s mother in the movie Carrie.  While not quite as convincing, it is a respectable showing nonetheless.

Aside from acting, the story drags on too long.  With about thirty minutes left, the movie jumps into something akin to a videogame flashback cut scene, which attempts to quickly explain the first ninety minutes.  The last ten minutes of the movie are typically Hollywood, included because of the writer’s need to spoon feed the audience a more conclusive ending.

Ewww

My Rating: 55%
The film is tolerable, and the storyline good, but the previously mentioned poor dialogue and weak acting nearly ruins the film.  As far as videogame films go, it’s a tolerable picture, but overall, it left me feeling as though I wasted two hours of my day.

Readers have left 2 comments.
 1. Untitled
SuperGuido, Super Administrator
55% are you insane? The visuals alone in the film should rate it 60% and you didn't even mention them! That creepy pyramid headed dude with the huge blade was awesome and the graphics in the film were mad. Not to mention you didn't watch House of the God-we-need-to-prove-uwe-boll-wrong-but-failed-utterly
and-made-the-worst-film-in-history Dead 2 which would really give you some perspective on how good this film actually is.
My Rating: 75%
Sure it's not perfect, but hell we won't ever see a perfect video game film until the directors, actors and especially the studios realize that gaming is a massive industry with millions of customers (over 9 million Wii sold worldwide already topping the 8 million Xbox 360) who have a lot of money and are savvy consumers and critics. We are not just children who play these games. Once they realize that, I expect it will take another year or two and several more failed blockbuster videogame adaptations. Remember when all the comic book films are total garbage? Now look at them. That is what will happen to videogame film as well. It will just need more time.

Then maybe they will make a sequel to this film and do it far better. But I still enjoyed this film personally and that was before I saw House of the Dead 2. (which is now the stick by which all crap film will be judged)
 Posted 2007-09-13 03:44:48
 2. Untitled
jjbmetal, Publisher
55%?!?! You're crazy. This rates way higher in my book 77-80%. This was much better than Resident Evil: Apocalypse, but still definitely below the first one. And like SuperGuido says, how can you not even mention pyramid head? He was the coolest character.

And after Bioshock coming out, what about the miner guys that walked around, looking similar to the "Big Daddys". The radio going crazy when the monsters are near, just like in the game. When the siren would sound, and the world would go dark, and everything in Silent Hill would change. I thought that was a great take on the transition in the game from the fogged over town to the totally hellish version of the town later in the game.

Other than saying, "this screenplay does a reasonable job of following the story of the first Silent Hill...", you give it no other accolades for including some of the best elements of the game.
 Posted 2007-09-13 08:05:23
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Last Updated ( Thursday, 13 September 2007 )

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