Movie Stats & Links
Joaquin Phoenix, Rory Culkin, Abigail Breslin, M. Night
intense at times and PG-13 for a reason. Don't bring the
She might make fun of you for jumping out of your
seat, but she'll do so while clutching your arm.
||Some fingers get
||There are quite a
||The entire movie.
||Merrill trying to
describe a trespasser to the police lady: "It was very dark"
and the pharmacist-girl asking Graham "Is douche-bag a curse
||M. Night Shyamalan
Sam Mercer, M. Night Shyamalan
As I was leaving the theater after seeing the movie
"Signs," all I could keep thinking to myself was "That movie was
fantastic" and "Why do people have to open their mouths during a
movie?" More on that later, letís get to the "fantastic" part.
A Movie Review
Quickly establishing himself as one hell of a writer, one hell of a
director, one hell of a producer, and even a not-so-bad actor, M.
Night Shyamalan mixes fear of the unknown with questioning oneís
faith, and makes a movie that creates suspense even though you have a
good idea of whatís coming.
The movie is "Signs," and Iím going to do my best to tell you as
little as possible because, as what is becoming the case with M.
Knightís films, the less you know going in the better the movie will
be. Keeping it simple, Mel Gibson is Graham Hess. He used to be a
preacher but isnít any longer. Joaquin Phoenix is Merrill, Grahamís
brother. Youíve got two little ones, Bo (Abigail Breslin) and Morgan
(Rory Culkin). One day the dogs, along with Morgan and Bo, discover
crop circles in the familyís cornfield. Perplexed, Graham calls in the
police lady, Caroline (Cherry Jones). They think it might be the work
of hoodlums, but maybe itís the work of aliens. It is with that
thought that one develops the deeper themes of the movie, and those
include if there are aliens, how can there be a God watching over us?
Are you lucky are just a victim of coincidence? Does everything that
happens in life, even the bad things, happen for a reason? And thatís
all Iím telling you about the story.
You might wonder how this movie keeps being touted as full of
suspense with a story like that, but M. Night does the best job Iíve
seen in a long time of using subtle sounds, music, and silence to keep
you on the edge of your seat. Sure there are times the characters seem
stupid, but itís easy to get past that when the story is so good.
Since I donít want to tell you much about the story, letís just
wrap things up. "Signs" is a movie that will have you scared, make you
laugh, and maybe even make you question your own faith or belief in
God. Gibson is great as the Dad struggling with his belief system,
Phoenix is great as the brother trying to hold the family together,
and Culkin and Breslin are great at developing characters facing the
unknown with innocence and wonder.
In the end "Signs" is one of the best suspense movies I can recall.
How does M. Night do this? He simply creates a scene where you are
pretty sure what is going to happen and actually gives it to you, the
problem is that you expect it to happen right in your face so you
think youíre ready for it. You find that youíre not. I can only
explain this better by slightly giving away one scene with Graham
running through the corn. Sorry. Anyway, I sat there sure one of two
things was going to happen: Either Graham would run face to face with
whomever was messing with his corn, or he would end up back in the
house thinking he was going nuts. I was ready for it at any moment as
Graham hears noises, he drops his flashlight, and I was secure in
knowing that "Boo" shot was going to hit, and it doesnít happen.
Graham steps back for a minute, now I let my guard down thinking it
was going to be "back to the house because heís nuts," especially
because that is the expression on Grahamís face, then suddenly there
is a leg in the corn and in my head Iím running faster than Graham
back to the house. M. Night does this just about perfectly every time.
Iím giving "Signs" 5 stars out of 5. Sure there are some dopey
elements to the movie, but then again, the basic premise is crop
circles and who makes them. But itís that simple premise that makes
the movie a masterpiece.
Lastly, as a public service, I would just like to remind all of you
that we donít want to hear what you are thinking WHILE THE MOVIE IS
PLAYING. Thereís a scene where you will wonder why Graham just doesnít
call the police. Iím thinking it, everyone in the theater is probably
thinking it, but I donít want you to tell me by telling your date "Why
doesnít he just call the police?" You are one of the reasons
it's so much nicer to watch a movie at home.
Thatís it for this one! Iím The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!