To mix things up a little bit, we’ve decided that from here on out Wednesdays will be dedicated to films that are available on streaming instead of being one of the ten “newest releases” you see on Tuesday posts. This is so that readers who don’t necessarily want to spend money on the physical discs can learn more about the films currently available on such sites as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon streaming. However, there will continue to be links at the bottom of the page to any retail stores that might be selling a physical copy of the film. On the last Tuesday of every month (discounting July) we will select ONE newly released film from that month, out of the 40 total films, and review that.
These special posts will also be in first-person.
Hey guys, Tyler here. So today as part of our first, inaugural “What’s Streaming?” post, I have decided to kick things off with a relatively known horror film, ‘Silent Hill: Revelation.’ I can already hear some of you groaning. Come on, guys, it wasn’t that bad!
Okay, it was sort of that bad.
For those of you who have no idea what we’re talking about, Silent Hill is a videogame franchise that was adapted to the silver screen back in 2006. The games, which I believe have thus far encompassed eight or nine installments, are about a town named, you guessed it, Silent Hill and all the messed up people with even more messed up pasts (as the narratives reveal) who find themselves trying to uncover the reason why they had been brought there in the first place.
See, you don’t find Silent Hill. Silent Hills finds you.
‘Silent Hill: Revelation’ picks up somewhere around eight years after the first film. In that, a woman named Rose loses her daughter, Sharon, after she crashes her car in a high-speed chase from the cops. Waking up to find her daughter missing from the wreckage, she has no choice but to go looking for her in the nearby town of Silent Hill. Spoiler, at the end of the film Rose finds her daughter and helps her escape (staying behind, herself).
End Spoiler – but really, what are you doing here if you haven’t seen the first film? We find out in the opening minutes of ‘Silent Hill: Revelation’ that Sharon and her father, Harry, have been on the run ever since the conclusion of the events in the first film. We come to find that the latter also had promised his wife (via some sort of weird telepathy) that he would never let their daughter return to the town.
After Sharon, now a high schooler in her senior year, finds out that her father has been kidnapped by an occultist Order in the hopes of luring her back to the place of nightmares, she goes. So, of course, she goes against her dad’s wishes and returns (“You had one job!”). Simple as that. Well, some people die before she gets there, but it’s of no real importance.
I first learned about Silent Hill through the videogames, long before the first film came out (which I saw in theaters). It was Silent Hill 2, which is, if memory serves, universally recognized as one of the scariest videogames ever produced. So when I say on a scale 1-10 that ‘Silent Hill’ (2006) is a ‘1’ and Silent Hill 2 is a ‘10’, SH:R is probably a ‘6.’
The biggest argument that many will jump to is the crappy acting, the sub-par dialogue, and if they’re trying to act all big and tough, the scares. I have to agree that the acting was pretty “meh”, as was the dialogue in many, if not all, parts… but almost 75% of the scares were actually pretty on point. Yeah, yeah, you have your cheap jump scares (now I know that even a Poptart can instill a sense of uneasiness) and some failed attempts at creepy atmosphere, but what people tend to forget is that this is based on a psychological-thriller videogame. It’s not looking for any Academy Awards or Emmys. Sure, it’s still a film and should be judged as such, but when you sit down to watch a videogame-film adaptation sequel, don’t expect much. That’s when you find yourself pleasantly surprised.
That being said, I wasn’t. I enjoyed the scares, the creepiness, the soundtrack (oh my goodness, that soundtrack). But was I impressed with the film? Not really. It’s just a fun, turn-off-your brain kind of movie! As for the scares, I will say that there were a few scenes that grabbed me: particularly one early in the film when Sharon – who goes by ‘Heather’, by the way – is waiting at a shopping mall restaurant for her dad to pick her up, and begins to “hallucinate” that everyone around her is eating human flesh. Yum!
If you’re not easily scared, then watch it for the aesthetics of the filmmaking process: the monsters, the sound mixing, etc. Say what you will about one-dimensional actors and predictable plot points, the team behind the entire Silent Hill franchise really know they’re stuff when it comes to creating a whole world that is at once a part of and separate from our own. I don’t know about you, but I would hate to be walking down a hallway at school, much less a hospital, and all of the sudden everyone’s gone, the lights are flickering like cray, and the wallpaper is peeling like so many snowflakes to be replaced by rusty steel caging, screams, and sirens.
Check out ‘Silent Hill: Revelation’ if you’re looking to just absorb a fun horror movie. You might not be scared or disturbed, but remember that this isn’t ‘Antichrist’ or ‘Rosemary’s Baby.’ It’s on streaming, so why not? Oh, but if you do be sure to watch at least the first ten or fifteen… maybe twenty minutes before making any judgment calls. It starts out a little awkward.
‘Silent Hill: Revelation’ is rated R for violence and disturbing images, some language and brief nudity. For more information on questionable content within this film, click HERE.
Available on the following streaming sites:
Available at the following retail stores and online markets:
Target — DVD ; Blu-Ray
Walmart — DVD ; Blu-Ray
Best Buy — DVD ; Blu-Ray
Barnes and Noble — DVD ; Blu-Ray
Amazon — DVD ; Blu-Ray
Comment below to continue the discussion of this review, or even just to suggest any streaming films you would like to see reviewed in the future.