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Juan Carlos Tabío
In New Orleans, the lawyer Emily Parker meets the handsome Billy Hytner by chance; they date and fall immediately in love for each other. One month later, Billy proposes her and gives an engagement ring he bought in an antiquary shop. From this moment on, Emily has visions of a weird woman and she decides to investigate about the previous owner of the antique ring. She discovers that the woman that is haunting her is Marie Salinger, who disappeared in 1969, and the police had found only her severed finger with the ring. Her fiancé Paul Hamlin was accused of the murder but considered not-guilty by the jury. Meanwhile, Emily meets Billy's parents and is not accepted by her future mother-in-law Beth Hytner. Emily continues to investigate the murder, disclosing the truth about Marie's death. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Talented people in a film that doesn't do much new in its genre
I wanted to like this movie. I did really. It tried hard. And why shouldn't CBS give us a spooky Sunday movie near Halloween?
Still, with a feminine heroine in a new marriage, learning another family's secrets, it just seemed reminiscent of a classic Gothic novel (maybe it should have been a period piece - naw, everyone thinks those cost too much).
There's a real effort in the direction to give an unsettling atmosphere, but it had a little too much quick cutting (to keep people interested who have short attention spans?).
Anne Heche gives a more honest and effective performance than other actresses that might have opted for this project. But many in the cast
such as Christopher Guest and Jonathan LaPaglia - are playing
characters that were not written with much originality.
The plot makes sense, and there are the obligatory scenes of hallucination. Nice set design and photography. Yet Kathleen Quinlan and David Andrews seemed too young to be playing Jonathan La Paglia's parents.
A distraction, a good effort, not bad - but not much that's different.
If you like ghost movies with a murder mystery like this I suggest:
David Koepp's "Stir of Echoes" (1999) with Kevin Bacon - based on Richard Matheson's novel (overshadowed because it was released near the same time as The Sixth Sense)
Sam Raimi's "The Gift" (2000) co-written by Billy Bob Thorton - the unexpectedly solid performances from a rather varied group of actors - Cate Blanchett, Giovani Ribisi, Keanu Reeves, Greg Kinnear, Hillary Swank and the late Michael Jeter - make this unique.
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