Wednesday, 11 November 2009

The Fourth Kind


Dir: Olatunde Osunsanmi (WIthIN)
Cast: Milla Jovovich, Elias Koteas, Will Patton
USA, 2009

Seen: November 7, 2009 at AMC Yonge & Dundas

Reason to see: Looked freaking scary!

The Fourth Kind is pitched as being based on real events. The film indicates that everything is supported by archival footage however even just a few days out of release this does not appear to be the case. This article over at indicates that the events in the films setting, don't match up to what has happened. This poses an interesting question about playing with the audience. For me, I find the heart in the horror here lies beyond the actual 'possible' archive footage but rather the ideas in the film and how they were presented.

I went into the film believing it what it says. Is it scarier if you think it's real? Yes. Is it still scary even if you don't think it's real? Hell, yes. One thing that seems to get missed on the 'is it real or isn't it real' discussion is that even if what they are showing as 'archival' isn't really, that doesn't mean it isn't based on true events or that something similiar couldn't have happened. This isn't the first time we have these kinds of encounters, and likely won't be the last.

The style of the film is unique, combining the footage of archive and dramatization and the majority of the time it worked very well. It keeps the viewer on their toes constantly thinking, shifting, reacting to the possibilities that are presented. The story itself is intriguing and the acting is solid. Considering some of the content shown, I'm relieved that it doesn't look real but that doesn't mean it wasn't a good film. It was scary as all get out, and I think that was the real intent.

I can say that it freaked me right out, even felt unnerving after the fact of hearing it might not be real. It's stuck with me for days. Not all films can do that, but The Fourth Kind certainly did.

Shannon's Overall View:
I was truly scared by it
I'm not sure I could sit through it again - too scary
I'd recommend to fans of scary movies

16 minutes of preshow including 1 commercial and 6 previews: The Wolfman (2010), Shutter Island, From Paris with Love, Daybreakers, The Crazies and The Book of Eli

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© Shannon Ridler, 2009


Suzie Ridler said...

Thank you Shannon for tracking down some information about this, you know it was bugging me big time. Sadly, I went into the movie questioning everything so as a result I never got into it. I did find moments scary and disturbing but I just didn't trust anything so even if it was just fiction, I still couldn't suspend disbelief. Bummer! For me, their marketing scheme backfired big time. I am in a way glad it probably is not based on a true story since it is very horrific and upsetting. I just feel lied to by Mila and I really like her. Ah, who knows. Who knows what is true, right?

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

Awwww, I'm sorry to hear that Suzie - I thought it would be enjoyable either way. Er, enjoy probably not the best word.

That's the thing with going big on the far out ideas... the hits really hit but if they don't, well then they can splat.

Suzie Ridler said...

Yeah, it kind of sucks, it's true. I tried to get into it but just couldn't because I questioned everything! Stupid brain. Well I think their marketing campaign is helping with ticket sales but didn't work with me. I'm glad you saw it right away before that info got out!

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