The Messengers – USA, 2007

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The Messengers is a 2007 American supernatural horror feature film directed by the Pang Brothers (The Eye and sequels), and produced by Sam Raimi (The Evil Dead and sequels). The movie stars Kristen Stewart, John Corbett, William B. Davis, Dylan McDermott, and Penelope Ann Miller.

The film began life as an original script called The Scarecrow by Todd Farmer. It was originally written as a psychological thriller as opposed to a more supernatural horror film. A graphic novel adaptation was published in January 2007 by Dark Horse Comics, written by Jason Hall, and illustrated by Kelley Jones. The prequel, Messengers 2: The Scarecrow, was released on June 21, 2009.

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An ominous darkness that invades a seemingly serene sunflower farm in North Dakota, and the Solomon family—the owners of the farm – who are torn apart by suspicion, mayhem, and murder…

Reviews [click links to read more]:

‘It’s pretty ordinary genre stuff, written by US screenwriters who cut their teeth on the Friday the 13th franchise. The result is a cross between video game-style American horror and Asian-extreme exotica: gaunt midwest farmhouses infested with horrid imps with black hair and grey skin doing their creepy, creaky heavy breathing.’ Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

The Messengers‘ tightly wound spring uncoils into utter nonsense… It’s as if the directors were kidnapped at gunpoint and forced to re-edit their work by a disgruntled studio suit who knows more about Sesame Street than horror films. You don’t need to have heard the rumours about reshoots and creative differences to appreciate what a bodge job this is…’ Jamie Russell, BBC.co.uk

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‘Most of the movie’s “gotcha” moments are artificial and somehow involve crows, which are somehow intertwined with the supernatural aspect of the story. How they connect, other than replacing cats as the animal responsible for artificial jumps, is one of the few aspects of the story that isn’t really explained. It does, however, allow for a few cool sequences, the like we haven’t seen since The Birds.’ Rafe Telsch, Cinema Blend

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Cast and characters:

  • Kristen Stewart as Jessica “Jess” Solomon
  • Dylan McDermott as Roy Solomon
  • Penelope Ann Miller as Denise Solomon
  • John Corbett as John Burwell/John Rollins
  • Evan Turner as Ben Solomon
  • Theodore Turner as Ben Solomon
  • William B. Davis as Colby Price
  • Brent Briscoe as Plume
  • Dustin Milligan as Bobby
  • Jodelle Ferland as Michael Rollins
  • Michael Daingerfield as Police Officer
  • Tatiana Maslany as Lindsay Rollins
  • Shirley McQueen as Mary Rollins
  • Kieria Robinson as Katy Turner

Filming locations:

Although the setting of the film is in North Dakota, filming actually took place in the Qu’Appelle Valley near the small community of AbernethySaskatchewan, Canada.

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