In Dreams

9 out of 10


Psycho Thriller

In the same distinctive style as "The Crying Game", this is director Neil Jordan at his best, as he creates one of the singularly best horror thrillers Iíve seen in years, making Wes Craven`s "Nightmare on Elm Street" look like amateur hour at the kindergarten. As in "Alien", it draws much of its strength on the fear of the unknown, keeping the source of evil tantalisingly unseen and obscured until almost the last few minutes. Even the victims are only glimpsed fleetingly leaving the horror of the mutilation to one`s own imagination.

Breathing life into this truly fearsome nightmare is Annette Bening. Her face like a crumpled paper bag compliments her tour-de-force as the stressed-out housewife whose premonitions bring her to the edge of insanity as she grimly faces the fact that only she can stop the murderer and that to do so, she must escape the padded cell in the asylum in which her visions of the future have landed her. Her pain, suffering and frustration are so real, you can feel it yourself.

As in "The Crying Game", Neil Jordanís eye for detail gives you the uncanny "it could happen to you" feeling by recreating such an atmosphere of work-a-day realism, for example, as the Police Officer interviews the airline pilot, a man starts cleaning the windows in the background. It`s true that it produces long periods of "kitchen-sink" chat, but when action starts, it`s free to run fast without being bogged down by dialogue. Furthermore, Jordanís talent for superb camera shots makes ordinary stunts like the car driving off the bridge not only sudden and unexpected, but truly breathtakingly "you are there".

As in most serial killer movies, the end looks pretty much obvious, but even here, Jordan pulls out a whole set of aces from up his sleeve in the last few minutes of the film, with a twist at the end that is not only totally unexpected, but is a piece of cinema that is so creepy it will genuinely give even the most hardened a shiver down their spine.

Don`t miss! Genuinely scary and creepy beyond belief

Film Critic: Robert L Thompsett