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The Mist (2007)

Review: written Jan 2009

Satisfyingly Mist-erious

The Mist (2007)

Frank Darabont's and Stephen King's third collaboration is a return to expected territory for Stephen King, and an unexpected turn to tightly wound horror for Darabont. However, if the movie title evokes memories of John Carpenter's `The Fog' and its risible recent remake, don't be fooled. Firstly, the horror when it happens is more intense, and secondly the movie sets out to be much more than just another creature feature.

So what happens? It's a standard small Stephen King-style American town, in the aftermath of a storm. A cross section of the town's society are in the supermarket when a mysterious fog rolls in - then a man runs out of the mist with blood on his face saying `there are things in the mist - they took my friends'. So, the townsfolk hole up in the supermarket, and then follows the fascinating part of the movie. The creatures make their presence known, and an explanation of sorts for their appearance presents itself, but that is hardly the point. The movie focusses on the interaction of the townsfolk as they polarize, and latent resentments surface leading them to feel the need to unite under a cause or leader. If the unhinged bible-basher is somewhat over the top (if not downright offensive) it is more than made up for by a great cast, acting their hearts out - even a remarkably good Thomas Jane. The controversial ending I think is perfectly in tone with this theme of exploring what people will do, and transcends the film from a mere creature feature or straight to DVD King movie, to a genuinely interesting piece of work that will spark thoughts and conversation long after the movie is over.

All in all, a thumbs up to this one, with gore in places and a moderate air of tension, but stirred to great effect with an interesting exploration of human nature.

The Mist (2007)

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