Such a frustrating disappointment
I don't have all the words right now but this film is a work of art.
Like the great film, it's made with a great deal of visible affection both in front of and behind the camera.
The movie turns out to be a little better than the average. Starting from a romantic formula often seen in the cinema, it ends in the most predictable (and somewhat bland) way.
Don't get me wrong, the original is a great classic and noting can really top that. However the Carpenter remake does take interesting steps that even the writer of the book. For example the stillborn. While much like the first movie, it's no surprise that there have been other Damned kids, whom have been swiftly eliminated. Neither side anticipated the complications that are seen in everyday child-birthing. Not only that but it's handled pretty realistically on all sides. With the mother, she wanted to have the kid in spite of the implications of the conception and the consequences the other parents faced and her denial of that pushed her over the edge. With David whom the child was to be his partner, he is the only one of the Damned that learned about pain and loss and is able to empathize with Reeve's character, who also suffered loss. This in turn caused him to at least try to reach out to the kids in hopes they could feel the same way David feels, which would give both humanity and the Damned a chance to live in peace. I can't help but praise Carpenter for trying to find a grey area, in his remake of a black and white classic.
"Village of the Damned" doesn't have that John Carpenter quality we've come to expect from the director's more "personal" projects. The passion we see in his remake of "The Thing from Another World" is all but absent here. I don't get a sense of emotional attachment to the source material like I do for Howard Hawks' original 1951film. Maybe that's because I've read and seen interviews with Carpenter and his production partner where they admitted they were less than enthused to take on the movie and had ulterior motives. Since "Village of the Damned" was made before the CGI craze hit Hollywood, we get a lot of practical and traditional special effects. Director Carpenter features not just one, but two burned and charred bodies for horror enthusiasts to enjoy. The visual effects of the children's eyes are also a treat to look upon.John Carpenter shares the responsibility of the musical score for "Village of the Damned" with The Kinks' singer, songwriter and guitarist Dave Davies. The combination of these two talents makes for an eclectic soundtrack. Let's just say it's not quite as menacing as what we've come to expect when sitting down to watch Carpenter's productions. John Carpenter's "Village of the Damned" isn't necessarily a bad movie. It just feels like the iconic director was going through the motions. Almost like he really didn't have any personal stakes in creating something that would stand the test of time like his own "Halloween" or "The Fog." The acting isn't really bad and there are some chilling moments, but I couldn't shake the idea that I was being walked through an updated Reader's Digest condensed version of the original 1960 British film.
After a strange affliction hits their small town, a group of woman suddenly become pregnant and gives birth to a series of children granted with special powers that make life difficult for the rest of the town and decide to do something about it.Overall this one was quite the enjoyable and slightly entertaining remake effort. One of the best efforts about it comes from the absolutely chilling effect here done with the titular children, who are quite possibly among the most chilling and terrifying kids seen in the genre. The pale, pale features, light blond hair, emotionless faces, monotone voice and insane ability to continually be with each other in numerous groups for each of the different encounters manages to make for quite an effective time here even before getting to their powers with their physical appearance generating quite a large amount of scares enough. The powers that come into play here are utterly effective as well, making for some great times here with the effect of the spinning eyes and flashing lights emanating from there which all centers around the idea of them being aliens or some other life-force that happened upon the scene and really makes for quite a fun time overall here. Those powers are given quite a wide berth here which comes from some really great action scenes including the early scenes of them out in town causing the mass amounts of suicides by jumping over cliffs, driving vehicles into exploding canisters or just generally forcing their will upon others and makes for a grand set-up to the second half where they take over the town and set-off into the barn to be by themselves which is really quite enjoyable as there's plenty of fun here with them taking out the Army troop sent in to kill them and the finale where he has them trapped alone with him. These here do manage to make this good enough to hold out over the few minor flaws on display, namely from the first half here where there's just way too much mystery going on that doesn't get resolved at all. Not only does this part feature the mysterious wave that comes over the people but it's also entirely unclear how exactly that enabled the woman to become pregnant as nothing was shown to have happened to them in order to cause this nor did anyone say anything about how it happened. The whole pregnancy angle is a huge question mark, and leaving it as unexplained as it does is quite troublesome, as is the remaining parts of this since it's built up around the governmental protection policy of studying the children which never comes to fruition and it all seems to go back to normal anyway almost immediately after. As well, the last real flaw here is the rather bland way they tend to go about enforcing their will on people, as they just flash their eyes and that's about it. The effect is cool, but it doesn't really provide much in the visual sense. Otherwise, this was quite fun and highly enjoyable.Rated R: Graphic Violence, Language and continuous threatening actions toward children.
A mysterious shadow passes over the small coastal town of Midwich, California which makes everybody unconscious when they are inside the perimeter. Dr. Alan Chaffee (Christopher Reeve) was out of town during the incident. Dr. Susan Verner (Kirstie Alley) is with the feds National Science Foundation. Frank (Michael Paré) is killed during the incident leaving his school principal wife Jill McGowan (Linda Kozlowski) a widow. Mark Hamill plays Reverend George. Then they discover that every woman got pregnant and just as surprisingly, every one of them wants to keep their babies. Single girl Melanie Roberts (Meredith Salenger) has a still born. The children grow up smart superior beings with telepathic powers. Mara Chaffee (Lindsey Haun) is the leader of the children. David McGowan (Thomas Dekker) is the runt who lost his mate when Melanie Roberts lost her child.This is a movie that could use a '5 years later' insert. Once nobody is willing to abort their babies, the movie can jump ahead. There is nothing absolutely necessary other than the alien baby and that may have been better as a reveal much later in the movie. The movie needs to jump to the creepy kids because that's the best part. Lindsey Haun is terrific as the cold-hearted leader and Thomas Dekker is adorable. They are the only cool thing about the movie.