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(Review originally written at 26 August 2004)

What was the cast thinking when the read the script? It puzzles me how many big names (Dennis Quaid, Sharon Stone, Stephen Dorff, Juliette Lewis, Kristen Stewart, Christopher Plummer) were in this movie. It makes me wonder if the even read the script! The story is very standard material, no it's even worse than that...

The movie starts of really slow and bad, in the first hour there are basically just some characters talking and walking on screen without that there is really something interesting happening.

The story is done dozens of time, especially in the last couple of years. It is standard thriller material stuff. There is a family moving into an house, the previous house owner than shows up and of course there is a huge secret he is carrying with him, which also involves the house. Oh the originality is killing me! It's a very standard thriller formula. What follows are some standard thriller moments, including a standard and predictable ending.

This movie also contains one of the worst executed scene's I've seen in years. "The snake's in the house" scene. First of all the family goes totally over the top crazy, I mean they act like they just have seen Oprah Winfrey walking naked through their house! It's supposed to be a scary and hectic moment but it is almost comedy like because of the editing, camera positions but also thanks to the truly horrible musical score by Mike Figgis (also the director) himself. The score is so incredibly simple that it literally could have been composed by an 8 year old.

Are there some positive things to say about this movie? Not many...It is of course always great to see some good actors in a movie and this movie surely has some good actors. It's too bad that Stephen Dorff plays such a standard psychopath villain, he has played so many good and better villain roles before. It was weird to see Juliette Lewis, she was looking old and...fat! She always used to be such a skinny and baby face looking girl, was it make-up or has her look really changed that much?

I hereby officially declare this movie as a waste of time.

3/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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