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Good concept and twist - Decent Brit Flick
The Gathering (DVD)
Member Name: kirstymc
The Gathering (DVD)
Advantages: Excellent concept
Disadvantages: Some plot holes.
Good concept and twist - Decent Film
Director Brian Gilbert
Writer Anthony Horowitz
Upon arrival in the town of Ashby Wake Cassie (Christina Ricci) is hit by a car causing amnesia that leaves her without any clue of why she is there. The driver of the car Marion allows Cassie to stay with their family whilst she recovers. Meanwhile Marion's husband Simon is researching a recently uncovered buried church from the 1st century. The church contains a strange fresco of a group of people watching the crucifixion of Christ. As Cassie stays longer in Ashby Wake she begins to have visions containing inhabitants of Ashby Wake. Will the secrets that the church hold reveal who Cassie really is and just why is she in Ashby Wake?
I have to say I really enjoyed this film. It has all of the elements that you would expect from a classic British supernatural thriller - small weird village with secrets and creepy inhabitants, ghostly premonitions and the feeling that some ancient evil has been awoken. The film is written by Antony Horowitz who has also written the screenplays for numerous Poirot and Midsommer Murders which should give you some feel of what to expect in the film.
The basic plot of the film is who is Cassie and why is she in Ashby Wake. You will, as I did, spend the whole film trying to work out why Cassie is there and what her connection is to the recently uncovered church from centuries earlier. However more importantly the film is based around a very intriguing thought provoking concept which I thought about for days afterwards and wanted to find out more about, as ever, I can't discuss as it would give the ending away.
Unfortunately the final film has suffered some sever cuts and there are a few plot holes that occur as a result. It was never entirely clear to me the relationship between Cassie and Michael the young son of the family who take Cassie in to their home nor was the relationship between Cassie and Dan. I was also left questioning the motives of the character Frederick Argyle who is central to the unravelling of the mystery. Nevertheless there is enough here to still make this a very enjoyable film. It is probably saved by the great concept.
The characters in the film are really good as are the British cast. It is one of those where you find yourself going "oh thats thingy out of thingy". The only character I had a problem with was Cassie not because she wasn't a good character but because she was played by Christina Ricci (not that I have anything against Christina). This may just be me but I really do not like it when an American actor is plonked in the middle of a British film for no apparent plot reason. I find an American accent grating amongst the British accents and Riccis "star presence" is really intrusive amongst a cast of mainly unknown Brits. I cannot help but think I would have enjoyed the film more if Cassie had been not been played by an American actor.
On the whole I thought that this film was ok but what is a brilliant concept is not fully explored nor given full justice.
If you like films such as The Others or Sixth Sense you should enjoy this.
Summary: Decent British supernatural thriller based on an intriguing concept.