Review of Silent Hill: Revelation 3D

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Heather Mason (Adelaide Clemens) and her father (Sean Bean) have been on the run, always one step ahead of dangerous forces that she doesn't fully understand. Now on the eve of her 18th birthday, plagued by horrific nightmares and the disappearance of her father, Heather discovers she's not who she thinks she is. The revelation leads her deeper into a demonic world that threatens to trap her forever. Written and directed by Michael J. Bassett, the film is a sequel to 2006's Silent Hill. It is based on the survival-themed video game Silent Hill 3.
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Movie Review: "Silent Hill: Revelation 3D"

-- Rating: R
Length: 94 minutes
Release date: October 26, 2012
Directed by: Michael Bassett
Genre: Horror/Mystery/Thriller

In the first installment of the "Silent Hill" movie franchise, the mother and daughter were trapped in an alternate universe that was also a ghost town. Ruled by a cult, the evil town entrapped the mother Rose (played by Radha Mitchell), while the daughter, Heather, was able to escape with a little help from her father. Rose made sure that Heather left with a special medallion to be used for a mysterious task later. "Silent Hill: Revelation 3D" picks up the story about six years after the escape.

Heather (Adelaide Clemens) knows that something is wrong. She lives with her father (Sean Bean) who forces the small family to move often. The girl has been in more than one high school since leaving Silent Hill years ago. Heather believes that her mother died in a car accident, but can't shake the feeling that something more is going on. This feeling is compounded by vivid nightmares of a ghost town shrouded in ash and monsters too horrifying to speak of. Heather also finds herself having vivid waking dreams. In those dreams, her surroundings morph into a hellish version of the place she only sees in her nightmares. Heather also has reason to believe that someone is following her.

Things come to a head after Heather witnesses a murder in her waking dream. She immediately finds that the murder actually happened in reality. Her father is also missing. The only clue Heather has is a message to go to Silent Hill. With her friend Vincent in tow, the girl travels to the ghost town. Along the way, the memories of her childhood in the town flood back. One important gift that Heather holds is the medallion. She is sure that the object is a key, but only half of one. The other half is in Silent Hill. Finding her father and the other half of the medallion are now Heather's only goals.

Entering Silent Hill is like coming into a live version of Heather's nightmares. There, the faceless, headless, tentacled, and misshapen dream monsters are all out to get the girl. Vincent is captured early on, leaving Heather alone to fight her way through the beasties in order to liberate her father and possibly shut down this nightmare land for good. Along the way, she meets a terrifying character with a pyramid for a head. The frightening figure actually rescues Heather from a few precarious situations.

Director Michael Bassett brings the video game world to the big screen in a way that more closely matches the live action version gamers are used to. "Silent Hill: Revelation 3D" is a sequel that works to explain the original tale without adding too many unnecessary details and mythologies. In fact, the movie reveals more things to the fans of the games. The fans of the first "Silent Hill" will not be disappointed, as the revelations mentioned in the movie's title are fulfilled with ease. Bassett also respects the game and previous versions of the "Silent Hill" franchise by creating 3D scenes that are engaging and enhance the plot without coming off as cheesy and awkward. Fans of 3D movies will be impressed by the graphic brilliance of the film despite the shocks and scares.

This "Silent Hill" installment also does not skimp on the scary scenes. Following Heather into Silent Hill is like walking into a minefield of horrors, where anything can jump out at any moment. Even her visions before coming to the ghost town are visually horrifying and scary enough to catch the audience by surprise. The creepy and often hideous creatures are enough to make anyone's skin crawl, even without 3D enhancement. Appearances by big names like Carrie Ann Moss and Malcolm MacDowell add some star power to the film. However, by the time they appear, viewers will be too scared to notice.

With a creative cast of creatures that harken back to "Pan's Labyrinth," "Silent Hill: Revelations 3D" is a Halloween film that will continue to haunt dreams well into the holiday season and beyond. Bassett's skill in creating the memorable 3D violence and vibrant terrors in the ghost town only make the film leap off the screen like a dream that the audience keeps reliving.

In addition to cluing everyone in on the extent of the craziness that brought Heather's family to Silent Hill in 2006, the movie also works to set the scene for a third installment in the series. While the search for the father is the focus of "Silent Hill: Revelation 3D," the mother still remains somewhere in the town, having failed to escape during the first film. Bassett's version doesn't let the audience forget this either.

The terrible scares, creatures, and revelations make this "Silent Hill" film one to definitely see.

Rated: 3 out of 5 stars