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15 Feb 2013
I didn't see this movie in theaters because of all the overwhelmingly bad publicity it was getting at the time. But having just played the Silent Hill games for the first time last year and loving most of them, I decided I needed to eventually sit down and see this one for myself, if for no other reason than to see how bad it was firsthand.
And... Well... To be honest... I enjoyed watching it more than the first Silent Hill movie.
Don't get me wrong, the first Silent Hill movie is a much, much better movie. But it is also much harder to watch. The pacing of the first movie is fine up to the end of the school sequence(Minus the unnecessary Sean Bean scenes), but then it grinds to a halt and we get some really painful to watch scenes: anything involving the annoying Anna character, the stupid series of more Sean Bean/talking in the church scenes, the silly exposition dump flashback, the Cybil witch burning scene, and the ridiculously over-the-top final slaughter. Most of the time I find myself skipping through most of the scenes after the school straight to the ending.
Revelation doesn't have the same dream-like pace the original had, but that also means none of the scenes drag like the original's. Sure, there might be silly, even laughable sequences which fail to scare, but none of them really stay that long either.
And more importantly, I never found myself being overly-repulsed by the violence in Revelations like I did in the original. There is some disturbing imagery in Revelations to be sure, but nothing like the skin-ripping, barbed-wire butchering carnage of the original(Of which there is absolutely no equivalent violence in the game that movie was supposed to represent).
I think the main flaw of this movie was also intended to be its greatest strength; it is a relatively faithful adaption of Silent Hill 3, minus some mischaracterization, shoe-horned Pyramid Head and the ending battle. And let's face it, out of all the Silent Hill games, Silent Hill 3 has arguably the weakest story, carried mostly by its level design and creepy imagery.
However, trying to just adapt Silent Hill 3 faithful to the game is ultimately what broke this movie, since any sequel to the first movie is dragged down by the massive game deviations and frustratingly vague ending. So to fix this, the director ended up just ignoring almost everything from the first movie that didn't fit with the games, which alienated most of the fans of the first movie, leaving a sequel which only catered to fans of the games.
Video game fans can be an even more critical bunch, and number of bone-headed decisions like making Vincent a love interest, shoehorning Pyramid Head into the movie with the (understandable) role of Alessa's executioner, removing all of Claudia's motivation and the final confrontation ultimately alienated them as well, making this movie almost universally reviled.
But I'm not entirely convinced all the hate is justified. The set design and practical monster effects are all really good and the music is stellar as always. The cinematography is pretty good overall and while not all the acting is brilliant, I've seen far worse in horror movies. Some scenes could have used a little bit more exposition, even though I was able to infer the things they didn't explicitly explain based on my knowledge of the games, where other scenes such as Rose's could have been cut entirely.
Like I said, its by no means a "good" movie, but I can appreciate it for what it tried to do. It was meant to be a transitional film from the continuity lockout of the first film to the universe of non-Alessa storylines from the games. Pity that all of the missteps with this film likely mean that we won't get to ever see films set in that universe, or at the very least the director won't get the chance to make them.
I just can't bring myself to hate it for trying. And at the very least it remained Heather's story, unlike some other video game adaptations I could mention.
27 Jan 2013
Edit: As per request I am making this a general Dead Space 3 topic
I think I may still be high on adrenaline. But I had to share my thoughts on this experience.
I had previously beaten Dead Space 2 twice on normal difficulty and been repeatedly killed every step of the way. The description of Hardcore mode seemed so ridiculously impossible that it almost seemed like a cruel joke by the developers. A three save limitation in a game riddled with instant-kill sections, plus a massive difficulty spike on normal enemies? More ammo limitations in a game that already had me starved for ammo on normal?
I knew about the reward for Hardcore mode: the Hand Cannon. And I really, really wanted the Hand Cannon. But there was no way I was brave enough to even touch Hardcore mode, especially since I had managed to die at least once in the opening hospital both times I had played this game.
Then a week ago as I caught an ad for DS3, my thoughts drifted back to how I had never unlocked the Hand Cannon in DS2. And it upset me that they would place such an awesome reward behind such an impossible challenge. Finally I cracked and started up Hardcore mode, expecting to be frustrated to the point of quitting.
As expected, I died alot and had to restart from a previous save, more often because of a instant-kill section than at the hands of a normal enemy. But what kept me going was the fact that I never died at the same part twice. My skills are average at best, but every time I was defeated I came back with a new strategy to help me succeed the second time. Naturally after enough repetition I memorized when enemies would appear as well.
The absolute worst part was that flying section that could instantly kill you immediately following the final boss. I dreaded it more than anything else as I played through the last sequence of the game, as I fully expected to mess up at the last second and start over again. Luckily this did not happen.
The whole ordeal was extremely stressful and the most pure example of "Survival Horror" I have ever experienced. I wonder if people have gone even further and beaten this game on one life and with no saves(Although I suppose it would be easy if they've unlocked the Hand Cannon first). The weird thing is the reward of the Hand Cannon now seems to pale in comparison with the achievement of having beaten this mode.
Has anyone else here beaten DS2 Hardcore mode? And if you have, would you say you were an experienced gamer or a novice in over their head like I was?
26 Mar 2013 - 20:19
22 Mar 2013 - 18:29
22 Mar 2013 - 6:23
21 Mar 2013 - 19:20
21 Mar 2013 - 9:54
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