The Others (2007)
Cast: Nicole Kidman, James Bently, Alakina Mann, Fionnula Flannagan.
Direction : Alejandro Amenábar
I used to have confusion in identifying (not now) the Australian actresses Naomi Watts and Nicole Kidman because of their strikingly similar appearance. Just like the giant ape starts to like Naomi in the film King Kong, I also started liking her from the moment I saw her in the same film. One day I saw a few scenes from the film The Others for the first time, and couldn’t beat the thought about its lead actress that, “is this the same girl whom Kong likes?” My friend clarified me they are different actors. King Kong’s actress is Naomi Watts and Nicole Kidman is the lead actress here. I was amazed that they look almost exactly same. The same night I finished watching The Others. And it was really good. Yesterday night I saw it again and it is still good as the first time.
Grace Stewart (Nicole Kidman) is a single mother living in a lonely mansion in coastal England in the near end of World War II. She is badly waiting for the war to end soon so that she can be reunited with her husband who went to fight in the war. Her 2 children Anna (Alakina) and Nicholas (James) are about 6 to 8 years old and they have a strange and rare light sensitivity disease. They cannot be exposed to light brighter than a candle. Suddenly one day, 3 servants, an aging housekeeper Mrs. Bertha Mills, an old gardener Mr. Edmund Tuttle and young maid Lydia who is a mute. They come and take the jobs voluntarily. Things turn after the arrival of the servants and their weird behavior which makes the rest of the film.
The Others bears remarkably brilliant performances from Kidman and her on screen children. She captivates and scores by her clean and neat performance, as a fear-ridden, over caring mother who gives utmost care in keeping her children away from disease. Rest of the cast is also no different. They did what is required at their best, especially the young lad.
What makes The Others interesting is its very minimal cast, low lighting and a single location – the palatial mansion where they reside. Unlike most horror films having barrels of bloods and gory images, this is different from them that there are no cheap scares and not even a single drop of blood spilled. Spanish director Amenábar deserves a large applause for this. This is the most interesting part of the film. The fact that the children have a light sensitive disease itself gives a necessary dark and eerie setting to the film. His screenplay seems to be at a slightly slower pace for a thriller-horror. But the thrill and suspense never faded away from the beginning to the end of the film. For a film of horror – thriller genre, it is surely one of the best made, without leaving the viewers disappointed at the end.
My Rating: 9/10