White Noise

"Terrible"

White Noise Review


White Noise is predicated on an intriguing process called Electronic Voice Phenomenon (EVP) where the dead contact the living through televisions, telephones, and radios. Some may think it's ridiculous, but EVP has long been a fascination for ghost researchers. It's also been the basis for some of the creepiest and most disturbing horror movies ever made, like The Ring and Poltergeist. But with White Noise, we receive mixed signals and a new broadcast that becomes a boring waiting game for the thrills to begin.

Michael Keaton is Jonathan Rivers, a successful architect and loving husband to his pregnant novelist wife Anna (Chandra West) and father to his son Mike (Nicholas Elia), from a previous marriage. After Anna's sudden disappearance and subsequent death, a man named Raymond Price (Ian McNeice) contacts Jonathan claiming he's been receiving messages from Anna on the other side. Desperate to be connected once again with his wife, Jonathan begins a dangerous obsession with EVP.

He converts his living room into a studio equipped with numerous television monitors, computers, and high-tech recording devices ready to capture anything he sees or hears. Soon, Jonathan completely distances himself from real life. Important business meetings are cancelled, and weekend visits with his son are woefully dismissed so that he can keep his eyes and ears glued to the televisions. Jonathan believes the messages he hears in the white noise are alerting him to crimes that have not yet been committed. He quickly becomes a superhero for the living -- saving lives and delivering good news from the beyond to his neighbors. Too bad he can't do anything for the comatose audience in the theater.

Even from its opening frames, the predictable White Noise fails miserably to frighten, enlighten, or entertain. The central problem is that too many scenes take place in front of static television monitors with barely audible sounds and images that look horribly reproduced just for effect. What are we supposed to be listening for? What's so important that Jonathan must forgo his son and life in order to listen? If this is truly an accurate depiction of the science behind EVP, then it's a totally boring and mind-numbing experience unworthy of fictional filmmaking.

Television movie director Geoffrey Sax appears completely lost in his first big screen attempt. White Noise is directionless. Because a clear plot is never delineated, it becomes burdensome for us to identify with Jonathan's plight and understand his reactions. The first half of the film that deals with Anna's death is remarkably devoid of any emotion from Jonathan, and the bizarre twists and turns in the second half offer us more questions than answers.

Much better films dealing with similar ideas are out there; focus your gaze in the horror section of your local video store, not a scrambled movie screen.

Deleted scenes and a commentary track aren't the highlight of the White Noise DVD -- it's the series of samples and how-to footage about recording EVPs for yourself. Creepy.

Sometimes they just don't need captions.



White Noise

Facts and Figures

Run time: 101 mins

In Theaters: Friday 7th January 2005

Box Office USA: $55.9M

Box Office Worldwide: $56.1M

Budget: $10M

Distributed by: Universal Pictures

Production compaines: Universal Pictures, Gold Circle Films, Brightlight Pictures, Endgame Entertainment, Corus, The Movie Network (TMN), Province of British Columbia Film Incentive BC, Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit (CPTC)

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 1 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 8%
Fresh: 12 Rotten: 135

IMDB: 5.5 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Jonathan Rivers, as Anna Rivers, as Sarah Tate, as Raymond Price, as Mirabelle Keegan, as Jane, as Mike Rivers, as Detective Smits, Marsha Regis as Police Woman

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Imperium Movie Review

Imperium Movie Review

First-time filmmaker Daniel Ragussis takes an unusual approach to this thriller. Since it's based on...

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

Like a 10-years-later follow-up to 28 Days Later, this small British thriller takes a refreshingly...

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

Director Antoine Fuqua brings his usual fascination with violence to this remake of the iconic...

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

As it's been 12 years since the last Bridget Jones movie, expectations aren't too high...

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

A-list director Ron Howard worked with the surviving Beatles to assemble this engaging documentary, which...

Blair Witch Movie Review

Blair Witch Movie Review

It's been 17 years since The Blair Witch Project shook up the cinema and created...

Anthropoid Movie Review

Anthropoid Movie Review

Outside the Czech Republic, few people know about Operation Anthropoid, a spy mission in 1943...

Advertisement
Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

From Laika (The Boxtrolls), this is one of the most beautiful, sophisticated animated films in...

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

An offbeat comedy-drama with a timely kick, this charming family road trip takes on some...

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Sicario screenwriter Taylor Sheridan delivers another fiercely intelligent, engaging story that maintains high suspense while...

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

With heavy overtones of Hitchcockian mystery and intrigue, this stylish thriller is the enjoyably melodramatic...

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

The 1989 Muay Thai action movie Kickboxer starred a young Jean-Claude Van Damme, who pops...

Julieta Movie Review

Julieta Movie Review

Iconic Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodovar is back with another powerfully complex female-centred drama, along the...

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

An astute satire of the pop music business, this raucous mock-documentary is consistently hilarious from...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.