The Messengers | Chicago Reader

The Messengers

This stylish ghost story from rising Hong Kong codirectors Danny and Oxide Pang (the “Eye” trilogy) and producer Sam Raimi earns points for its set and sound design, eerily desaturated palette, able cast, and one really good special effect. Sadly, the movie just doesn't deliver chills. Kristen Stewart (Panic Room) plays a troubled teen who reluctantly moves to a run-down North Dakota farm with her anxious parents (Dylan McDermott and Penelope Ann Miller) and mute toddler brother. Soon the tot is communing with the vengeful spirits of the previous inhabitants, who target the girl. The Pangs' editing style of juxtaposing similar images shot from different angles and distances—a technique that worked in Bangkok Dangerous—here only dilutes what little suspense screenwriter Mark Wheaton could muster. With John Corbett. PG-13, 90 min.

Credits

Directors:

  • Oxide Pang Chun
  • Danny Pang

Cast:

  • Kristen Stewart
  • Dylan McDermott
  • Penelope Ann Miller
  • John Corbett
  • Graham Bell
  • Michael Daingerfield
  • William B. Davis
  • Dustin Milligan

Writers:

  • Stuart Beattie
  • Todd Farmer

Producers:

  • William Sherak
  • Jason Shuman
  • Sam Raimi
  • Robert Tapert

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