Screen Gems Movie Reviews
with Kennie Bass. You'll find it First On Fox!


The Messengers February 2, 2007
The Messengers
Studio: Sony Pictures
Rating: PG-13 for mature thematic material, disturbing violence and terror.

Can children see and hear things adults can't? And are they trying to warn us about them?

That's the message of "The Messengers."

When the Solomon family leaves Chicago for a more peaceful life in North Dakota they don't get the reception they were looking for.

Roy (Dylan McDermott) has been out of work for a couple of years. He decides to buy a rundown farm and raise sunflowers. His wife Denise (Penelope Ann Miller) is hopeful a change of scenery will settle down their troubled daughter Jess (Kristen Stewart).

But baby brother Ben really upsets the apple cart after the family moves in.

It seems there is much more to the house than meets the adult eye.

Apparently, Ben can see the ghosts which inhabit the house. Jess also runs into the specters, but no one believes her claims the house is haunted.

"The Messengers" is the latest film by Hong Kong directors Danny and Oxide Pang. It has some atmosphere and the Pangs are very good at the "gotcha" moments which permeate today's scary movies but it feels like we've seen all of this before.

The adults ignore warnings and unexplained events and everybody hangs around the house until the ghosts decide enough is enough and come on full bore! Of course if the characters were smarter the movie wouldn't be very long.

I will say this, the scariest parts of the film involve Ben. There's just something really disturbing about little kids in horror movies. Monsters, aliens and evil psychopaths I can handle. But creepy little kids. Now that's something to be frightened of.

"The Messengers" has a few good moments but overall it's just another generic scary movie.

Wheeling native John Corbett (Burwell) is a bright spot. His mysterious drifter adds some spice to the plot. It's a good thing he's around because otherwise a dreary film would have been even worse.

On my rating scale, "The Messengers" hits a Single.


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