Premonition (D: Mennan Yapo, 110 min)
What's up with Sandra Bullock and time-travelling films?
Fresh off that sappy tearjerker about Keanu Reeves and her living in the same house in different time periods -- whatever! -- Bullock returns in Premonition to play a woman whose husband (Nip/Tuck's Julian McMahon ) dies, returns, dies again, etc.
The trailers for Premonition have been playing for months, and they feature Sandra looking anxiously at calendars, trying to figure it all out. Looks like a big-budget version of Medium to us. Let's hope it's better than her Miss Congeniality sequel.
Updated Mar 15th, 12:16 PM
PREMONITION is a well-crafted thriller with an interesting concept and a solid Sandra Bullock performance at its centre, as a woman who wakes up each day unsure of whether her husband is dead or alive. Is she crazy? Is it all a crazy dream? Does she exist simultaneously in alternate time streams? Well, let's just say that by the time we fight our way through to the end, the audience is simultaneously disappointed and bemused. At the climax, which is supposed to be emotionally touching and optimistic, the audience at my screening broke into a fit of giggles. In its favour, it's not a remake of the J-horror film of the same title.Rating: NN
- J. Harkness
Dir. by Mennan Yapo, runs 96 min.
Dead Silence (D: James Wan, 90 min)
The ads and trailers for Dead Silence are clever. They always include the words "From the writers and director and producers of Saw."
Saw, of course, is only one of the biggest-grossing franchises in recent history. The Jigsaw Killer has entered the pantheon of horror baddies.
Dead Silence looks like a vengeance film involving a ventriloquist's dummies and dolls. This isn't new, of course. There's something pretty creepy about dolls. Go rent Magic (with a young Anthony Hopkins) or any of the Child's Play films.
Along with leads Ryan Kwanten , Amber Valletta (who's also in Premonition) and Donnie Wahlberg , look for local actor Dmitry Chepovetsky .
Both open Friday (March 16). Screened after press time - see reviews March 15.
Updated Mar 16th, 4:16 PM
DEAD SILENCE is predicated on the idea that puppets are scary, and if you don't show the puppets doing much, it's inexpensive. From the writer of the first two Saw movies, it's the story of a ghost using dolls to get revenge, and features more dialogue howlers per minute than any other movie this year. My favourite? "Some things you remember, and some things you can't forget." Dimly coherent and apparently shot on leftover sets from Silent Hill (no, really, in Oakville), this is a movie with so little appeal that its biggest-name actor is Donnie Wahlberg.
- J. Harkness
Dir by James Wan, runs 90 min.