Norman Spencer, a university research scientist, is growing more and more concerned about his wife, Claire, a retired concert cellist who a year ago was involved in a serious auto accident, and who has just sent off her daughter Caitlin (Norman's stepdaughter) to college. Now, Claire reports hearing voices and witnessing eerie occurrences in and around their lakeside Vermont home, including seeing the face of a young woman reflected in water. An increasingly frightened Claire thinks the phenomena have something to do with the couple living next door, especially since the wife has disappeared without apparent explanation. At her husband's urging, Claire starts to see a therapist; she tells him she thinks the house is being haunted by a ghost. His advice? Try to make contact. Enlisting the help of her best friend, Jody, and a ouija board, Claire seeks to find out the truth of What Lies Beneath. Written by
Eugene Kim <firstname.lastname@example.org>
According to the original script by Clarke Gregg, the scene with the Ouija board was started by Jody. Later she runs out screaming after the séance gets a little out of hand. The scene was changed for the movie in order to emphasize how much Claire thinks she is losing her mind. See more »
Claire drives away from the house in the pick-up, which we can see has the boat attached to it. One viewer claims the boat disappears as she turns a corner, but another disputes this. See more »
What lies beneath? A smarter movie struggling to get out...
Robert Zemeckis' homage to Hitchcock (funny how we always say 'homage' and not 'plagiarism') concerns a married couple, their spooky new house, a suspicious neighbor...and enough red herrings to weigh down any commercially-viable product. Still, I was hooked for about a third of the way (once the wife supernaturally took on the persona of a missing woman and seduced her husband with a little licking and biting, I began losing faith). By the finale, so many gimmicks are being thrown at the screen, it just becomes an upscale B-flick. All the inconsistencies aside, one has to applaud Michelle Pfeiffer for her gratifying performance; even though the entire subplot about Pfeiffer's neighbor leads nowhere, she is very appealing walking up to the man in public and calling him a "murdering son-of-a-b*tch". Harrison Ford is fairly solid as well, until the last act which leaves both he and Michelle completely rudderless. That's when the filmmakers go overboard and sink this suspense-thriller in a sea of slick desperation. **1/2 from ****
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