Kidman and the kids
The Others
Review by Ross Anthony

The Others An old creaky mansion in the foggy UK, three wide-eyed spooky servants, a nearby graveyard, white sheets covering old furniture, pale children, and a prissy madam whose husband is off at war. If that's not enough to trigger memories of a dozen other movies, wait until Kidman puts her hand to chest and sighs, "Oh Charles, where are you?"

Cliches aside, Kidman and the kids do a splendid job of acting eerily. Interestingly enough, the kids are allergic to light, consequently the curtains must be drawn during the day; each room has two doors, the first shut before the second open. "This house must be like a ship, the light contained like water." This tasty circumstance helps keep the film afloat, but there's just not enough wind in the sails to keep the voyage compelling.

The actual conclusion however houses an interesting climax, the initial execution of which, plays strong. Nonetheless, this being the only real pay off to an hour and a half of bumps and howls; I'd have expected the filmmakers to positively juice the moment - they don't. As a result, the climax feels truncated and underplayed.

  • The Others. Copyright © 2001. Rated PG-13.
  • Starring Nicole Kidman, Fionnula Flanagan, Alakina Mann, James Bentley, Eric Sykes, Elaine Cassidy, Christopher Eccleston.
  • Screenwriter/director/music: Alejandro Amenabar. Executive producers: Tom Cruise, Paula Wagner.
  • Produced by Fernando Bovaira, Jose Luis Cuerda, Sunmin Park at Dimension Films/Cruise-Wagner/Sogecine/Las Producciones/Del Escorpion.


Copyright © 2001. Ross Anthony, currently based in Los Angeles, has scripted and shot documentaries, music videos, and shorts in 35 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. For more reviews visit:

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Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 08:01:40 PDT