By Cal Wayne
Silent Hill is an adventure horror film directed by Christophe Gans, and is, oddly enough, based on a video game. The basic assumption is that most films based on a video game are set up to fail, but Silent Hill is a fucking great game, and the film adaptation was nearly flawless.
We follow the story of Rose Da Silva, a caring mother who follows a trail of clues to the mysterious town of Silent Hill after her daughter goes through an intense bout of sleep walking. From the start of the film, you can feel something very unnerving in the plot as it slowly unfolds. It's almost as if this movie slaps you in the face with an atmospheric fear that sticks for the majority of the movie. It's a rare feat for movies to be able to keep you in a state of nervousness without actually doing anything at all. I would like to attribute this to the excellent score that was composed for this film. I can honestly think of no movie which puts fourth a more fitting musical effort to even further enhance the atmosphere.
Silent Hill will give you a solid serving of unrelenting scares for the entirety of the movie. It creates a very strong identity during the beginning of the film, and it continuously feeds off of itself in new, horrific ways. I would like to attribute the films ability to throw things together, in such perfect chaos, to its roots as a video game. Silent Hill is not limited in ways that films who are not feeding off of another direct source of limitless inspiration may be. As the movie progresses you only become more entrenched within the characters quests, and thus the movie presents an additional level of horror.
Silent Hill is a masterpiece worthy of many watches. I can think of no other horror movie made in the 21st century that has captivated me quite like Silent Hill. This movie ignores the inherent drawbacks of being made in the image of a video game, and instead exploits them, proceeding to use these inspirations to make a movie not like any ever made. I have nothing but respect for Christophe Gans after watching a movie that was nearly flawless even on minute levels.