The Predictables: An Analysis of ‘The Others’ (a motion picture)

As the title suggests, I found the movie less than satisfying. Spoilers abound from this point forward, as does the subtitle of the blog itself. Brace for contact.

Seriously, this pasty woman who was married to the Avatar of L. Ron Hubbard or something comes strolling through this big Downton Abbey wannabe place and lets these three unwashed Irish people into her abode. Then she gets all movie-theater serious about cell-phones and the curtains close so these two little ghost children can come floating out and give you the whole God Damned ending right when they do. BOOM! Ghost Children. And Ghost Nanny. And Ghost Gardner. And Ghost Mute. So Ghost Mom.

Then the Former OT VI-Super-Trans-Clear-Post-Operative-Thetan-KSW-Ultra-Fine-Smoothed-Out-on-the-R&B-Tip lady decides she can’t tell the ghost children their daddy’s a ghost and she cries and cries. Then other things happen that are very boring and silly until the former Mrs. Tom Cruise tries to leave and she steps into a fog bank that scares her so she goes back home.

But as soon as all seems at its most melancholic, Best Doctor Who comes walking up dressed like a Doughboy. But he’s acting like the illegitimate child of Robert Smith and Morrissey and he lays about and cries all day long. If he suddenly jumped up and started listening to Sunny Day Real Estate it wouldn’t hurt the plot one way or the other.

So Best Doctor Who gets over the butt hurt long enough to make Living E-Meter Woman get all cold. But when he leaves, she gets all weepy. Seriously, if she could leave that fog you know she’d be at the Hot Topic. Then she fires the Irish people and they scare the children by raking some leaves off some tombstones and the little girl realizes she shouldn’t be so mean to her little brother.

Anyway, little ghost girl talks about her friend who everyone is supposed to think is the ghost but for those two little eerie fuckers giving you the heebie-jeebies as soon as they came out of their tomb in the first 10 minutes. And that’s another thing: The mama wanders around with these keys, locking the kids into rooms to read the Bible. I mean, really–Why should kids have to suffer in Hell forever like that? Damn, lady. Stop it with the Nurse Ratched routine.

Turns out, the mama killed the kids and Best Doctor Who died in World War II and the little ghost boy was actually a little live boy but the living family moved out of the Downton Abbey place and that was that. The Ghost Irish peasants get their jobs back and everyone deals with it. The end.

And if there’s more to the story than that, I can’t find it. This was probably the most predictable, most obvious, least suspenseful horror flick I’ve ever seen. And I’ve seen Anaconda. Seriously. This film deserves no better treatment than what I’ve given it.

10 thoughts on “The Predictables: An Analysis of ‘The Others’ (a motion picture)

  1. kmmoreno1

    I love the satire! While I scored the movie a 3 out of 5, I can’t disagree with anything you said. I’m not one for doing the deep view of the book or movie from the outset. I typically have to watch it, then reflect on it to figure things out–call me slow 🙂

    You mentioned the husband was killed in battle and came home to say good-bye. I just figured he was dead and came to convince the mom she was dead and help her crossover. I like your idea better, I guess he was killed in battle and wanted a final good-bye before he crossed.

    I’m just curious, how far in to your first viewing did you catch on they were all dead? I didn’t get it until Kidman woke up and her husband was gone.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. kristinsuzy

    Evidently I’m a very slow learner. I mean, they had to really spell it out for me before I got that EVERYONE was dead. And that’s why I liked it–they tricked me. But if I’d figure it out earlier I’d’ve had nothing to entertain me but the Downton Abbey wannabe set.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Warner H. M.

    V-man,

    I loved your post. I didn’t think the movie was predictable, but I thought it had no point. I had even seen the movie when it came out, and I couldn’t remember the twist at the end….which isn’t saying much. I was surprised by the ending twice! I did remember that the workers were ghosts…but I forgot Nicole Kidman was. Great write up and thanks for the laughs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I find that I read foreshadowing and symbolism easier than most. What seems subtle crashes against me like an awful tidal wave of the obvious. It’s in no way associated with intellect as much as it is a skill developed to support my own pretentious self-delusions. Unfortunately, almost everything in the film telegraphed the ending.

      Like

  4. Victor,

    It’s a bit tough to tell, but it sounds like you have an negative opinion of Scientology… ;p

    I concur with your assessment and mentioned the same thing in my own post: the film was quite predictable, so much so that my 12 year old had it figured out. All it would have taken to lift this movie to a better standard would have been more “incursions” from the others, but in a sense of the often mentioned priest in town, or perhaps the ill-fated mailman, or some other “they are still part of this world” confusion.

    No, actually, I lied. I don’t think anything could lift this one up. Anything built on a twist ending is almost on life support before it begins.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was in Scientology for two weeks. I had a gift certificate. Seriously. 😀 No, my opinion of that thing is NOT favorable.

      It was a predictable film. Well produced–well acted–poorly conceived. The writing is EVERYTHING.

      Like

  5. Best Doctor Who? I say nay, sir. Nay. But the rest? Spot on. It’s a movie built solely around the twist. And for a film that seems so interested in the idea of Faith and Religion, it’s disappointing that this ended up being only another element to further support that twist. The twist doesn’t comment on her faith, nor vice versa. Shame, shame.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Look you, nobody but a poor lad from the precincts of Manchester, who had nothing to eat but gravel and bits of glass (if it was a high holiday) could bring the Doctor back. You be appreciative, because he knows the value of a pound, yessir!

      Yeah, I lifted the idea from here:

      Like

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