How tenuous is man's hold on civilization when survival becomes an issue? When the lights go out and stay out for several days, suburbanites Matthew and Annie learn the hard way that man is... See full summary »
Bertram Pincus is a man whose people skills leave much to be desired. When Pincus dies unexpectedly, but is miraculously revived after seven minutes, he wakes up to discover that he now has the annoying ability to see ghosts.
Tom's a regular guy, a utilities lineman, married, with a young son, his wife is pregnant; he hangs out with long-time pals in a Chicago neighborhood. At a party, his sister-in-law hypnotizes him, and he goes into a deep trance. Before waking him, she suggests that he keep his mind open. That night he sees flashes of violence and the ghost of a young woman. His young son, too, is "a receiver," but while the boy is calm and coherent in his conversations with spirits, Tom is confused and agitated. Over time, the young woman's story comes to the surface, and Tom begins a hunt for her body that puts him and his usually understanding wife, Maggie, in grave danger. Written by
Tom (Kevin Bacon) has hypnotized by his sister-in-law, played by Illeana Douglas, and from then on his life's a little....well, weird. He sees a ghost of a disappeared girl, and he's not the only one - his young son's been seeing the spectre for weeks. What unfolds after that is that Tom slips further and further into imminent madness. His wife Maggie (Kathryn Erbe) can't fathom his insanity, and it's driving her up the wall, as both of the men in her life are increasingly distant and non-communicative. So what happened to Tom when he was under hypnosis? His sister-in-law claims there's a door in everyone's mind that's never been opened, and it sure looks like Tom's door is wide open, with a big neon sign over it, inviting him to run through with abandon. What's behind all of this freakiness? There's a mystery afoot, but it turns out to be a little more standard and predictable than one would hope with the solid premise. Can't fault the actors, though - this is an unusual role for Bacon, who here comes off as a tough, strong, blue-collar kind of guy - he and his family are close to what one might call white trash, but they're never portrayed as being mean-spirited or hateful. This is just one of those cases where weird stuff happens to nice folk, kind of like the clan in "Poltergeist."
So this is a stylish psychological/supernatural thriller with game performances by a capable cast. It's watchable and full of chills, but the ending's a little pat.
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