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25thframe.co.uk > Drama | Mystery | Thriller > The Village

The Village

(2004)

Director(s)
M. Night Shyamalan
Stars
Joaquin Phoenix
William Hurt
Brendan Gleeson
Cherry Jones
Celia Weston
John Christopher Jones
Frank Collison
Jayne Atkinson
Judy Greer
Fran Kranz
Michael Pitt
Charlie Hofheimer
Scott Sowers
Zack Wall
Pascale Renate Smith
Jordan Burt
Jane Lowe
Charlie McDermott
Robert Lenzi
Willem Zuur
Liz Stauber
Tim Moyer
Sydney Shapiro
Mia Rose Colona
Chloë Wieczkowski
Sydney Wieczkowski
M. Night Shyamalan
John Rusk
Joey Anaya
Kevin Foster
Robert Randolph Caton
Christopher Descano
John Dinan
Evangeline
Sean Andrew Fash
Matthew Flynn
David Foster
Thomas M. Hagen
Jessica Jennings
Shannon Lambert-Ryan
Nicholas Alexander Martino
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News
The UK movie goer this week kept Lucy starring Scarlett Johansson in the top position with a number of weaker new releases in the market.

The Luc Besson directed film took just under £2 million during it's second weekend of release and now sits with a total gross of £8 million.

Highest new entry of the week is the buddy cop comedy Lets Be Cops starring Damon Wayans Jr., as you'd expect from a film of this kind it's a slap stick comedy.

Lets Be Cops takes £1.6 million for the weekend, but I suspect it may sink and disappear from the box office quickly.

Other new films to hit the box office this week are
Sin City A Dame To Kill For at 4 (with previews grosses)
If I Stay at 6 - the new Daniel Radcliffe so maybe a little disappointing
As Above so Below at 8
Million Dollar Arm at 15

A year ago this week One Direction This is Us took the top slot on it's debut weekend of release pushing Elysium to 2.

Five years ago The Final Destination took the top of the box office on it's first weekend taking over from Inglourious Basterds.

Ten years ago Dodgeball entered the chart at the top and knocked The Village down to 2 after it's single week at the top.

Fifteen years ago Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace was toppled from the top of the box office by South Park: Bigger Longer and Uncut on it's debut.

At the UK box office this week Luc Besson's directed Lucy about a woman using 100% of her brain takes over at the top.

Starring Scarlett Johansson Lucy tops the box office on it's debut week of release with a weekend gross of £3.07 million.

Compared to Luc Bessons previous films this is by far the best opening he has had, Arthur and the Invisibles is his highest grossing British release which took just over a million on it's release in 2007.

Scarlett Johansson is part of the Marvel Avengers universe so has seen some astronomical releases over the past few years and so it's a little unfair to compare!

Falling into second place is last weeks top film The Inbetweeners 2 which has now grossed £27.6 million after 3 weeks of release.

There is a few other new entries this week which are
Into the Storm at 4 Deliver Us From Evil at 5
What if at 6

Doctor Who: Deep Breath at 8, from a single day special showing on Saturday
Two Days, One Night at 14

Last year Matt Damon was starring in Elysium which entered at the top of the box office knocking Kick-Ass 2 right down to 7.

Five years ago Inglourious Basterds was the new top film in the UK knocking The Time Travers Wife down to the runner up spot.

Ten years ago M. Night Shyamalan released The Village which hit the top spot on it's debut with The Bourne Supremacy falling a single place to number 2.

Fifteen years ago Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace reclaimed the top spot knocking Austin Powers The Spy Who Shagged me to number 2, highest new film was Micky Blue Eys at 3.

Daniel Radcliffe, for the immediate future anyway, is always going to be Harry Potter, for 10 years he lived and breathed the character and to millions of adoring fans he is the image of the boy wizard, which is why it is an achievement that while watching The Woman in Black Harry Potter hardly crossed my mind.

The story, set in an Edwardian era, centers around Arthur Kipps (Radcliffe) who is a solicitor sent to clear up the paperwork of a recently deceased woman. Kipps himself has a 4 year old child and is a widow, his wife having died during child birth.

Kipps arrives in the village of Crythin Gifford where he is to spend the next couple of days working before his son arrives to join him for a holiday. During his train journey Kipps meets the local wealthy man who he befriends and then is given a lift in his car (noted as being the first car in the village) to the inn where he is booked in to stay.

The welcome Kipps gets from everyone else is far from friendly, and as he goes about his business the next day he is more or less told to leave town. What ensues from there is a traditional ghost story with scares and jumps at every opportunity.

As I first mentioned Radcliffe, fresh from the Potter franchise where he IS the boy wizard, manages to detach himself from that completely, not sure if it's the side burns or the fact that his character spends a lot of time alone and doesn't say a lot, or maybe it's the low budget film not being laden with special effect but it's a good move.

I'm showing my age now but I remember the Hammer Horror films of the 70's and 80's which at the time were scary as hell, and the TV show had me hiding behind the sofa more than Doctor Who did, and this film, which is produced by Hammer and filmed in the UK captures the spirit of the old Hammer perfectly.

The film is jumpy if a little corny in places, not too long and has a story which is acceptable for a horror film of this type. I started the question things when a seemingly normal guy decides to spend the night in the creepiest looking house in England that is cut from mainland during for large part of the day and he'd already experienced minor paranormal activity (I'd never have gone anywhere near the house in the first place) and some of the jumpy scenes were far too predictable and came off as amusing but on the whole it's an enjoyable scary horror harking back to the glory days of Hammer.

Good: Decent screenplay from Jane Goldman and some genuinely scary moments. Well directed by James Watkins and a good supporting cast.

Bad: Does get predictable and some of the scares are funny. Too many unanswered things happen and the ending although good could have been better.

25thframe.co.uk rating:

Some years ago I was fortunate enough to be in New Zealand very soon after I had seen the last of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and while there I went to a small town called Mata Mata and when on a tour of he farm where the Hobbiton scenes in the film were filmed.

The village itself was barely still standing other that the area where the actual Hobbit houses themselves were, but he trip was well worth it as many of the workers who were on the farm had good stories to tell and despite the appearance of disrepair you could still get a good sense of being in Hobbiton. Unfortunately the weather and roaming sheep had not been kind and things were deteriorating fast.

The good news this week is that the set builders are back on the farm and are re-building the village ready for work of Guillermo del Toro The hobbit which starts filming next year. This really is exciting news as hopefully the owner of the farm will have a better say on things being removed this time and next time I go to New Zealand I can visit a fully realised village which would be wonderful.

The Hobbit is being readied for a 2011 release so there is still a lot of time before we get to see this but as you can imagine as Tolkien film produced by Peter Jackson and directed by Guillermo del Toro is a tasty prospect.

For some great pictures check out theonering.net.

Chart info

UK release date:

Highest chart position: 1

Weeks on box office: 5

Chart history
Date
Place
Gross
1 / N
£2,945,763
2 / 
£1,570,369
4 / 
£691,776
7 / 
£452,888
8 / 
£258,398
Non-chart history
Finer details

Total UK gross £9,980,280 and the 541th top grossing film in the UK

UK BBFC Certificate: 12

Genres: