Friday, April 21, 2006

The Hills Have Thighs—Silent Hill

Thanks to our winning of tickets from the fine folks at Dream Strands Comics & Such, who are the very finest purveyors of all things comic book, collectable figurine, and gnerd-friendly card games, we went to a preview screening of Silent Hill last night. Despite the poor delivery on previous promise of movies based on video games, Boy and Girl Kid had both been waiting with bated breath for this one, and I have to say…it sort of delivered? Hmm.

Let’s just start off by saying that Silent Hill the movie at least hits some of the atmospheric quality and plot points of SH the game. The plot is meaningless, but basically follows the structure of: family has creepy adopted kid with sleep walking problems that lead her to night-time wanderings to foggy cliff tops, and mom is determined to find out the cause of her daughter’s problems by seeking the help of a qualified specialist and…ha ha! That’s just my little joke on you. Of course mom does not take her kid to a doctor. Mom does what any sensible parent would do; she kidnaps the kid and heads for the abandoned titular ghost town in the dead of night at high speeds, ditching the cops and concerned townsfolk in the process before crashing her car on the outskirts of town. I mean come on! That’s just common sense, right?

No, it is not. Any “plot” developments in Silent Hill depend, as per horror flick usual, on the complete and utter stupidity of its main characters, and boy howdy, are the people in this story butt stupid. Because it’s based on a game, once Mom hits town to try to find her now missing kid, her path follows the basic structure of the game—monsters appear, cue fog, cue abandoned school, hotel, and hospital scenes. Someone in the art department really went heavy on the crinkle paint effects, and it was all very artfully distressed. Mom is chased into town by a female motorcycle cop, who sports full on Village People helmet, visor, super-stretchy cop shirt barely covering her Wonder Bra, and skin-tight leather pants. In fact, I spent at least half the movie expecting the mom and the cop to suddenly drop to the dirt and start making out. I think the actress playing the cop accidentally wandered in from the porn shoot next door. But she wasn’t the only one; this movie also features the always sex-o-riffic Deborah Kara Unger as “original-and-now-crazy mom” in full Kabuki makeup and dreadlocks. There’s also a scene where ghostly women in sexy Halloween “nurse” costumes do an undulating dance which features short skirts, shapely thighs, and full cleavage that would make Pamela Anderson proud. In fact, this whole movie was sprinkled with what seemed to be escaped members of Cirque de Soleil writhing around in Spandex body suits and moaning, which was pretty cool. I mean, it’s nice to see backup dancers and ex-porn stars getting some work in “legitimate” film.

Anyway, there’s more blather about the members of an extreme Christian cult which is headed up by, naturally, the Borg Queen herself, Alice Krige, and there’s some back story about how her crazy cult ways are what caused the town to be taken over by a demonic female burn victim and her minions in the first place. The movie is chock-full of unintentional humor, and Boy Kid and I were not the only ones laughing our asses off at the stupid mom, the horrible acting of Creepy Kid, and the fine styling of the backup dancers in their monsters suits. Instead of making out with Stupid Mom, Porn Cop gets turned into a Krispy Kritter, which is too bad if you ask me, because this dreadful thing could have done with some girl-on-girl action, which would have made as much sense as anything else. Just why again is there a guy with a giant metal cheese hat and who has an unnaturally large fish knife running around pulling people’s guts out of them? Anyway, the movie ends ambiguously, leaving room for a sequel firmly in place.

Going to Silent Hill for free was key to my enjoyment, so if you can manage to get someone else to pay, and you are in the mood to laugh your rump roast off while also being mildly creeped out, then by all means, go. I have to say, seeing the movie with a full herd of gaming nerds (gnerds) was fun on a bun. I do so love to walk amongst my people every now and then.

Verdict? Too much religion is bad for you, America is afraid of pre-pubescent girls, a return to coal as an energy source is not a good idea, and Deborah Kara Unger needs to fire her agent. Damn, now I have the urge to see some Village People porn. Until then, “Bow chicka-bow-bow!”


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