I love Halloween. I always have since I was little. I loved getting dressed up, apple bobbing and the rare treat of (closely supervised) trick-or-treating. However, once you reach teen years (and beyond in my case), unless you like getting dressed up in skimpy costumes, drinking and clubbing, you’re pretty limited for Halloween activities. As this isn’t my cup of tea, I decided that a trip to the cinema was in order.
My first encounter of Silent Hill was thanks to my friend James, who forced (yes forced) me to watch the first film about four years ago. Horror films aren’t really thing and video games are about a million miles away from my list of past-times but there was something about Silent Hill that I really couldn’t shake off.
I’m not going to go into a massive Silent Hill history as my account would be far from accurate and I doubt you want to hear it! But for any of you that do, I found this entertaining yet informative tongue-in-cheek video that will fill you in!
I fell in love with the movie world of Silent Hill (I have tried the video games, honestly I have, but I’m just no good at any video game!) Silent Hill is captures those parts of your childhood nightmares that continue to haunt you throughout your life, but it also has an element that intrigues you. Part of Silent Hill draws you in and refuses to let you go…even at the most terrifying moments, you can’t help but peer through your fingers.
Silent Hill Revelation is a direct sequel to the first film, but a tie in with the third video game. The film itself makes a lot of assumptions about the audience’s knowledge of Silent Hill; firstly, it assumes you have seen the first film and I think that, without having seen it, I wouldn’t have a clue what was going on. Secondly, it also assumes that you have some sort of knowledge of the video games. While my knowledge is very much limited, I did find that a rough background knowledge of the games helped me to understand the film better. This two sources of prior knowledge is pretty much vital because the direct connection made between the two films is incredibly clumsy and just touched on very briefly. The same goes, in my opinion, for the relationship between Heather and Vincent. The scenes featuring the pair felt awkward and unrealistic (in terms of a supposed ‘love’ scene, I’m not implying that the bizarre creatures are more realistic here…) and I felt that they were only added for brief moments of ‘light relief’ when I was really more interested in what Heather was actually trying to achieve.
I saw this film in 2D as I am not a fan of 3D films. Because of this, there were scenes that obviously appeared gimmicky because they were designed for 3D watching, however, once I had accepted these scenes, they didn’t bother me as much as I had expected and in 3D they would appear absolutely terrifying!
Overall, I was impressed with the film, and it had a seriously high bar to meet since the I would class the first Silent Hill movie as my favourite film. Silent Hill Revelation brought more gore to the screen than our first encounter, but in a way, I came to accept that it needed to be there as something had to be added for the momentum to increase. I loved that the film maintained the pure fantasy the the first film captured; it is a world that we know is only fiction and yet it recounts elements of our nightmares. The film plays with your head like no other until you are absorbed into Silent Hill with Heather. My only issue with the film was that it felt as though it had been cut short. Running a mere 94 minutes, there were parts of the plot that really needed more explanation, and as the film was building up to the conclusion, it suddenly fell flat and could have done with more time to offer a more conclusive solution and a longer period of time to build up to it.
I am hoping my trip to Silent Hill will offer my inspiration for my novel as my NaNoWriMo challenge starts today! But this film is one that I think people who don’t normally watch horror films should consider. There is something about it; something about the fantasy world that is created that must surely be enough to inspire creativity in all of us; whether it is a dream world or a nightmare. Like Wonderland, Silent Hill never really leaves you, even long after you have left it.