Silent Hill

RETURN TO SILENT HILL [Silent Hill Revelation 3D Review]

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RETURN TO SILENT HILL! Remember a few days ago when I wrote about Silent Hill and how it was a fantastic video game to film adaptation? While I still stand by that statement, the same can’t be said about it’s sequel: Silent Hill: Revelation 3D.  I knew regardless if anyone asked for this, I’d end up writing it. Mainly because I needed to write my indefinite hatred for it. It was boring, it was bland, and it really hurt the ego of the first film. Believe it or not, this sequel jumped and is actually based on Silent Hill 3 [the game] and unfortunately for fans – like myself – it did everything wrong; both in story and “scares.” Now remember: I’m going to come off as bias because I’m talking as a fan of the first film, and this “sequel” [with the most original sequel name ever] has very little to do with the first. I mean, okay, it is set in the same place and some situations are the same but it doesn’t continue the flow that the first film had. Not to mention, it doesn’t follow any of the momentum. The first ended in a kind of bitter way that made it feel like there was no real place for a sequel – which I liked – so this whole film just comes off as a cash grab. Be warned: this review is going to widely be negative, because it’s how I felt – and if you liked this movie, then I’m sorry..but not really.

Silent Hill: Revelations 3D takes place six years after the events of the first film. Between the first and second films, Sharon‘s mother has found a way to get her out of Silent Hill because of the danger, but now Sharon and her father find themselves on the run. She also changed her name to Heather, and her father, played once again by Sean Bean, has moved her from location to location, always struggling to keep his daughter away from the Silent Hill cult. Turns out, they want Heather [or Sharon.. or whatever her name is] to complete a ritual that will set them free from the evil, and now they’ve taken Heather‘s father to ensure the girl’s return.

Does this sound flimsy? Good. Because it is flimsy. Unlike Ganz, Bassett‘s screenplay for this “sequel” takes its sweet time picking up any momentum. When it does, it relies on quick flashes of creepy imagery or large pieces of exposition. As it turns out, everyone – and I mean everyone – Heather comes in contact with; seems to has a vital piece of information for her. Whether it’s about the town or its residents, all this [useless] information breaks the overall pacing of the film. The first Silent Hill was over two hours long, but it was much simpler and smoother than this 95 minute “movie.” As proven in Revelations, Bassett doesn’t seem to understand the concept of explaining things, so while the story is trying to move along, the film feels the need to grind to a shrieking halt every time it decides it wants to explain something. It makes the viewer feel stupid, like every detail needs to be explained in simple terms.

[the only interesting monster in the film]

As our “story” progresses, it becomes more and more weighed down by ridiculous twists and confusing “revelations” [oh, I get it now!] About half way through the film, all hell tries to break loose, and that’s when things just start happening for no reason. But don’t worry! Bassett, always ready with his exposition, handles the confusion we just felt by having a character explain out exactly what’s going on and why. Good thing, because it’s not like I just watched the movie or anything.. ugh.

What makes the Silent Hill video games so scary is that it always seems vague enough that dropping random characters into the game’s atmosphere could always be the starting point of an interesting mystery, but in the case of a movie, it seems to be next to impossible to translate onto the screen. The one thing it should be able to do is show us how creepy, intense, and effective the first Silent Hill movie was..or at the very least, build on it!

hey, Bassett! Clive Barker wants his monster designs back!

love the Silent Hill world: the [first three] games are masterpieces in their own right, and the first movie was fantastic. This sequel on the other hand, really hurt to watch. Remember, this is just my opinion. Although I didn’t enjoy it, there are people who preferred this film over the first. I think at the rate we are going with these films, a third one would be pushing our luck.

The question remains though: what did You think of Silent Hill: Revelations? Was it a worthwhile sequel? Or an unnecessary money grab? Let me know in the comments! Also, if you find yourself to enjoy what I do on here, then please take a minute and follow me over on my Facebook page [it’s at over 149+ likes – only a few more and we’ll have reached over 150!] By clicking that “like” button, you’ll see every post from warrenisweird the very moment it’s been “gone live” online; and I also share links to articles and pictures/videos that will not be featured here on the blog! Every “like” helps me a ton, giving me the ability to write more posts for you to read, so be sure to tell the horror enthusiast in your life to do the same, and share The Facebook Page with your family and friends! I’ve also been writing way more reviews on my Letterboxd account, this is because I’m trying to review every single movie I watch  – with each review coming the very next day after viewing! Are you interested yet? Check me out over there and click that “follow” button! I’m just bound to follow you back because I like reading other people’s thoughts on film, as well as writing reviews myself!

did I mention that the CGI is terrible? cause the CGI is terrible..

THANKS FOR READING.

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Film Study: It’s been TEN YEARS since we visited SILENT HILL

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I’ve always been a fan of Silent Hill. The games are eerie enough, with the rusty and dark settings always feel unsettling, and the atmosphere is brimming with personality. With creepy monsters around one corner, and an almost empty void of a town around the other, Silent Hill is pretty damn scary. I love these games, but I can’t play them in the dark. Not because I’m scared, but I start..hearing things. Naturally though, this would imply that the game series would make for an excellent horror film, right? Technically, there were two films: Silent Hill and Silent Hill: Revelations 3D. We’re going to look at the first film today, mainly because the sequel was a piece of hot garbage – which I’ll save to talk about another day if the interest is there. [LET ME KNOW IF YOU WANT IT REVIEWED]

So why are we talking about Silent Hill? If you follow warrenisweird on Facebook, you would have noticed that yesterday I mentioned that it’s been ten years since we got Director Christophe Gans’ vision of Silent Hill came to theaters and presented us with what might very well be the most faithful video game-to-film adaptation ever. [take that comment with a grain of salt..] While the film didn’t do insanely well, only earning $100 million against a $50 million budget, it was still praised for its atmosphere, set design, and visuals; which are pretty important in a Silent Hill title. I remember enjoying it when it came out, it was scary, it looked great, and it was generally entertaining. As a fan of the games, I was impressed..but that was ten years ago.. and the real question is: does it hold up? Only one way to find out, so strap yourself in – we’re going on a road trip. Destination: Silent Hill. Population: Spoilers.

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this scene feels like it’s lifted straight from the game!

The movie follows Sharon, the young daughter of Rose Da Silva[oh yeah – Harry isn’t in the movie – just so you know] who has been dreaming of a town – Silent Hill. In an attempt to show her that it’s just a dream. Rose makes the decision to take her to this town. However, the road to Silent Hill is anything but easy to reach, and Rose finds herself in a high speed chase between herself and a police officer only to end in a crash for them both! When she wakes up, Sharon has disappeared and Rose is at the entrance to the deserted, dream-like town of Silent Hill. As Rose begins the endless search for her daughter, she does not realize the terror and mystery surrounding her, finding herself getting more and more entwined into the disturbing past of a little town known as Silent Hill.

Right off the bat, the movie opens with music lifted straight from the game itself – in fact, the entire movie contains original tracks from the game as well as some being a remixed score. Just as it was a fantastic and brooding background when playing the game, it works very well on the big screen. The plot describes the town of Silent Hill that Rose finds herself trapped in as a “nightmare world”, and thankfully, that is exactly what Christophe Gans does with the film: we see buildings transform into a caged inferno when “the darkness” comes, we actually see the creatures that come with this darkness: the patient demons, “the nurses”, and..even Pyramid Head? Yes. Pyramid Head makes an appearance..even though he wasn’t in the first game. [which this movie is based on] But who cares? He’s still really pretty to look at – he’s no doubt here for the fans, not for the original story arc.

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But perhaps my favorite part of the film was knowing that almost none of the evil “creatures” are overused, and thankfully – that is what truly stops this separates this film from a zombie movie. The demons, with the exception of the Pyramid Head, aren’t the true evil of the film, but rather work together to give us a sense of fear while they are on screen. Gans was not afraid to get gory, having several scenes with deformed and tortured bodies – as seen above – even as far as to where we see Pyramid Head skin a human being.. with his bare hands[find warrenisweird on Facebook to see the GIF!] These scenes are extremely effective, and almost always adds to the intensity of the movie.

Finally, we have the best part of the movie: the fact that you don’t need any significant knowledge of the games to be familiar with Silent Hill‘s atmosphere – specifically within the town itself – It feels like the world is cloudy and dreamlike, like a living thing. Silent Hill is scary not because of it’s monsters and dark areas, but because it changes based on your darkest fears, secrets and sins.. Making this fear a very personal nightmare.

I mean, sure, the game was scarier. Way scarier. There was something appealing about the vagueness of the story here though – the fact that it was never fully explained. Some parts [specifically in the final act] could have been edited down and made more intense, but this is just nitpicks.. overall, the movie is really well done – especially being a video game adaptation – which don’t usually go over well. This goes above and beyond your standard fare horror flick. It’s made for horror fans, but feels like a love letter to the fans of the game as well!

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did I mention I love The Nurse demons?

I’m not saying this movie is flawless, it definitely has it’s positives and negatives, but for a video game adaptation – it’s pretty damn good. Again, I won’t be mentioning the sequel, Silent Hill: Revelations 3D, unless someone requests it – but being such a terrible sequel/adaptation, I might have to talk about it..for the sake of how bad it is. [if you want me to review it, let me know in the comments!] So does Silent Hill hold up after ten years? I’m going to say that I, personally, believe the only answer here is: Yes. I loved it then, I love it now, and I really want to [re]play through the games.

As always, now I turn to You. What are Your thoughts on an Silent Hill? Is it something you enjoyed? Or were you more a fan of the games? Let me know your thoughts on the matter in the comments! If you haven’t played the Silent Hill games – I strongly recommend sitting through and playing the series, or at the very least, watch a play through on Youtube! As reiterated [about 3 times] above, if you want me to review Silent Hill: Revelations 3D, let me know that in the comments as well! Also, if you find yourself to enjoy what I do on here, then please take a minute and follow me over on my Facebook page [it’s at over 149+ likes – only a few more and we’ll have reached over 150!] By clicking that “like” button, you’ll see every post from warrenisweird the very moment it’s been “gone live” online; and I also share links to articles and pictures/videos that will not be featured here on the blog.

Every “like” helps me a ton, giving me the ability to write more posts for you to read, so be sure to tell the horror enthusiast in your life to do the same, and share The Facebook Page with your family and friends! I’ve also been writing way more reviews on my Letterboxd account, this is because I’m trying to review every single movie I watch  – with each review coming the very next day after viewing! Are you interested yet? Check me out over there and click that “follow” button! I’m just bound to follow you back because I like reading other people’s thoughts on film, as well as writing reviews myself!

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[I was legitimately shocked at the visual quality of this “monster!”]

THANKS FOR READING.

TERROR IN THE SNOW: top 05 horror films from CANADA!

canadianhorrorAlthough it’s not the first thing you’d think of when you’d think of my home-country of Canada, [I tend to think “snow”] we actually make a lot of horror films! The best part is that many of them are recognizable by a larger set audience – even if you didn’t know they were made in Canada! We have had some of the best films the horror genre has had to offer, and that’s why I feel like I want to talk about Canadian horror. Specifically, five of my favorite horror films made here in the White North. Be sure to stick around, cause you never know if you’ll be surprised at some of these Canadian gems! Not surprisingly, many of the films on this list were filmed either entirely, or in part, in Toronto, Ontario.


SPLICE :

Splice was a weird, albeit exciting film about two young scientists who are told by their employers to quit their research on splicing together DNA. Although they swear that they’ve stopped the work, they secretly continue their work, but this time with human DNA. Filmed mainly in Toronto, Ontario; Splice also was filmed – in part – in Hamilton: just outside of Toronto.


SILENT HILL :

based on the video game of the same name, Silent Hill didn’t get the attention it deserved; since a lot of gamers found the story to be incorrect, or just terribly adapted. As a fan of the games myself, I actually found the movie refreshing – giving the sleepy town of Silent Hill a new spin. Like Splice, this movie was mainly filmed in Toronto, Ontario; but also had scenes shot in Winnipeg, Manitoba!


TUCKER & DALE VS EVIL :

arguably my favorite horror-comedy in a long time, Tucker & Dale VS Evil is a film everyone that enjoys the horror genre should see at least once. It’s funny, it’s vicious, and it’s got heart. I won’t explain what happens in the film, because it’s best going in blind – let’s just say I was told about the film, I watched it on Netflix, and then promptly ordered it..like immediately after seeing it. The film was shot entirely in Alberta.


VIDEODROME :

one of my more favorite films on this list ever since I bought a shirt from Fright-Rags with the same image above printed on it. [order that shirt here!] Videodrome is probably the weirdest thing you’ll see on tape/dvd/bluray. It’s a film you have to watch more than once to “feel” like you understand it – even if you don’t. It follows a sleazy TV programmer who begins to see his life and the future of media spin out of control when he acquires a new kind of programming for his station.. It was filmed in various sections of Toronto, Ontario


AMERICAN MARY :

I’ve talked about it before, I’ll mention it again, Mary Mason [above] is extremely hot.. like, ridiculously. The Soska twins definitely grab my attention every time they cast Katharine Isabelle in one of their films, her acting is just as good as her looks. American Mary is no different: It’s gory, it’s entertaining, it’s even a little sad by the end of the film. Totally recommended. Unlike many of the other choices on this list, this film wasn’t filmed in Toronto, but rather Vancouver, British Colombia!


Obviously, there are a dozen and one other Canadian films out there, I just decided to mention my favorite five. Hopefully this list showed you that there are actually well known movies that were made in the Great White North, especially big named movies such as Splice or even Videodrome! Because there’s so many more Canadian horrors, I may just have to a part two to this list. But only if there’s enough demand for it. What Canadian Horror film is your favorite? Tucker & Dale? maybe even Silent Hill – or, is it not mentioned on this list? Let me know in a comment, below! Also, if you found yourself to enjoy this piece, please take a minute and follow me over on Facebook where you can click the “like” button on my Facebook page. By clicking “like”, you’ll see every post from warrenisweird the very moment it’s been posted. I also share things that will not be featured here on the blog.  So be sure to tell the horror enthusiast in your life to do the same, and share the page with family and friends!

THANKS FOR READING.

horror gaming: SILENT HILL: SHATTERED MEMORIES

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as if a frozen little girl wasn’t creepy enough, right?

While there are already seven Silent Hill games before this one; Shattered Memories is the one of the only ones I’ve actually beaten all the way through, at least more than once. One thing to consider while playing is that Silent Hill: Shattered Memories is a remake/re-imagining of the first Silent Hill game. The game came out for Wii/Playstation2/Playstation Portable but for the sake of this post — I’m going by the one I have, since it’s the only version of it I’ve played: the Wii edition. Our story begins like any other Silent Hill game, a person [it’s been both a man and a woman in the past] and their daughter driving, until an accident spins them out of control. It’s only when the individual wakes from the accident, that you have the realization that your daughter is gone and you’re in a deserted town called “Silent Hill”. While I’m sure the game is more or less the same over each port, I like the version on the Wii mainly because when you’re playing, you use the Wii-Remote as a flashlight/cellphone moving the controller around like an actual tool you need. If that wasn’t enough to feel like you’re becoming the character, when you boot up the game and it’s loading, you get this on your screen: 20141003-085013.jpg I remember first seeing that ‘warning’ and wondering just what was I getting myself into. It almost make me nervous to play because I’ve never seen anything like it when playing a video game. As it turns out, during certain points of the game, [it feels like an interactive cutscene] you are in an office re-telling a psychologist what you went through in Silent Hill — asking questions like “have you ever cheated on a lover?” or even “did you really love your daughter?” to which you shake the controller up and down to say “yes” or shake left and right to say “no”. He also has you pick cards from a deck and other strange things but these choices in-game are important: as they determine what the game does to you..becoming, quite literally, your own personal nightmare.

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yep, yep, yep, and maybe?

The game has a couple endings; so by answering “tests”, like the one above, the game basically creates a custom game based on how you respond. I remember the game being really emotional the first time I played it, being that my ending was that Harry — the main character you play as — had killed his wife and daughter, and after realizing what he had done: killed himself. The whole game, I was a “supposed” spirit who had disconnected himself, trying to find his daughter due to regret. As for the whole psychologist part? turns out [according to my play through] it was the psychologist trying to piece together what Harry had said to him during their sessions before all this happened! [before he snapped] I mean, What. The. Fuck. So if you like horror gaming and you feel that you can handle the suspense, definitely give Shattered Memories a go, just be sure to answer as truthfully as you can during the psychologist’s questions — it definitely amps up the creepy-factor. There’s also a new “Silent Hills” playable trailer out for Playstation4, so if you get the chance; you should totally Youtube that! And this post concludes “horror gaming”, at least for now– but who knows? It just may come back another day. But for now, new posts will be about what I know best, horror films and “film studies”, etc!

THANKS FOR READING.