Anna Rydell returns home to her sister (and best friend) Alex after a stint in a mental hospital, though her recovery is jeopardized thanks to her cruel stepmother, aloof father, and the presence of a ghost in their home.
Rachel Carlson, a successful novelist moves to a small Scottish village to move on with her life after the death of her son. Strange things start to happen when she is haunted by ghosts and real life terror.
Henry Ian Cusick,
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 <email@example.com>
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 »
When Claire finds the tub filled with water (both times), it is completely filled. While the overflow drain would not have normally permitted this (and while the second time, it has filled abnormally fast and quietly), it's a ghostly event, which means some of the normal laws of nature are suspended. See more »
This is an example of a cheesy, low-budget idea gone Big-Budget, High-Concept Hollywood. The sole screenplay to date by actor Clark Gregg is an uneasy mix of supernatural thriller, suspense film and psycho-killer-horror with a clumsy exposition. The secondary characters are throw-aways, as the story suffocatingly focuses on a professor and his wife. Harrison Ford plays his role with all the passion of a cigar-store Indian, while Michelle ("Don't hate me because I'm beautiful") Pfeiffer does her boilerplate pained-and-tormented turn, complete with pinched cheeks and crocodile tears. Robert Zemeckis' direction is banal at best. The over-the-top CGI work is largely superfluous and overblown, particularly during the climactic scenes. Some reviewers described this as "Hitchcock-like" but Hitchcock would never have touched such a sub-par script nor depended so heavily on f/x. In fact, "What Lies Beneath" is rather short on suspense. There are, admittedly, a couple of scares but, shamelessly over 2 hours long, this "thriller" is largely inflated and anemic, and more closely resembles bottom-of-the-barrel DePalma.
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