Movie Reviews 111 – White Noise (2005)

White NoiseI’ve got to admit that one thing that turned me off of White Noise until now was knowing that this was a Michael Keaton film. Don’t get me wrong, I think he can be a great actor in the right vehicle (an outstanding Beetlejuice and yes, even a decent Batman). But in a horror he just didn’t seem like the right fit to me. But once again he’s proven that he has the chops and range.

After losing his pregnant wife in a freak accident, architect Jonathan Rivers (Keaton) is introduced to the ‘science’ of E.V.P. (Electronic Voice Phenomenon) when a strange man comes along and persuades him that he has recorded his dead wife’s voice.

When his EVP tutor and mentor Raymond mysteriously dies Jonathan and with the help of another former ‘client’ of Raymond’s, Sarah,  becomes totally immersed with the technology seeking more contact with his wife.  Together the two make a disturbing discovery about all of Raymond’s prior contacts with dead people. It seems they had more than just death in common and now Jonathan and Sarah are in danger themselves.

OK, it’s really all hokey and silly if you give it any thought. The fact that some of the EVP artifacts are collected on VCRs and they somehow manage to fine tune and filter VCR data  to pick out clearer footage of faces and voices is laughable. (I fear that some readers are already too young to know just how sketchy those videotapes used to be. Trust me, they were nothing like the pristine and detailed images from DVDs and Blu-Rays.) But once you get past the technological silliness there is a decent enough story with jumps and scares and a few twists.

It ain’t no Batman or Beetlejuice, but it was good enough for a sequel.

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