Thursday, August 18, 2005

The Gathering (2002)

A Film Review

Copyright Dragan Antulov 2005

The saddest thing about today's state of genre movies is filmmakers' tendency to waste excellent ideas in mediocre scripts. One of such examples could be found in THE GATHERING, 2002 British horror film directed by Brian Gilbert.

The plot begins in small English town when a young couple dies in gruesome accident that would unearth 1st Century AD church. Simon Kirkman (played by Simon Dillane) is a scientist entrusted by Church to examine the find. At the same time his wife Marion (played by Kerry Fox) drives a car and accidentally hits American tourist Cassie Grant (played by Christina Ricci). Young woman miraculously avoids serious injuries, but she loses memory and Marion brings her to her home in order to help her recover. There Cassie begins to experience frightening visions of violence, while the sinister-looking strangers begin to appear in town.

THE GATHERING is based on the script by Anthony Horrowitz, British writer best known for the popular TV series FOYLE'S WAR. This should have guaranteed an interesting thriller, because Horrowitz knows how to handle complex plots. The idea behind the plot was original and the beginning indicates that THE GATHERING might turn out to be above average horror thriller. Unfortunately, the great mystery is revealed long time before film's end, leaving the otherwise capable actors and director Gilbert to wrestle with formulaic and predictable finale, which is at the same time full of plot holes and implausibilities. Gilbert directed film very well and THE GATHERING indeed features some memorable scenes and images. Unfortunately, the huge gathering of talents and obvious effort invested in this film only makes the general impression more disappointing.

RATING: 4/10 (+)


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