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The Ward (2010)

R  |   |  Horror, Thriller  |  21 January 2011 (UK)
5.6
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 30,786 users   Metascore: 38/100
Reviews: 153 user | 243 critic | 18 from Metacritic.com

A thriller centered on an institutionalized young woman who becomes terrorized by a ghost.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Susanna Burney ...
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Roy (as Dan Anderson)
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Jimmy
Jillian Kramer ...
Ghost Alice
Mark Chamberlin ...
Mr. Hudson
Andrea Petty ...
Mrs. Hudson (as Andrea L. Petty)
Tracy Schornick ...
Cop #1 (as Tracey Schornick)
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Storyline

In 1966, in North Bend, Oregon, the runaway Kristen is captured by the police after burning down a farmhouse and is locked in the North Bend Psychiatric Hospital. Kristen is introduced to Dr. Gerald Stringer, who uses experimental therapy. Then she meets the inmates Emily, Sarah, Zoey and Iris and the tough nurse Lundt. During the night and in the shower later, Kristen sees the ghost of a woman and she learns that she is Alice Leigh Hudson, a mysterious wicked intern that has disappeared. When Iris is ready to go home, she is attacked by the ghost of Alice in the basement and murdered. She vanishes and the inmates decide to seek Iris out. Then Sarah is abducted by the Alice and also killed; the next one is Emily. Meanwhile Kristen escapes from her room and meets Zoey, expecting to protect her. However, Zoey is kidnapped by Alice and Kristen runs to Dr. Stringer's office. She snoops his desk and finds a report with the truth about Alice. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Only Sanity Can Keep You Alive

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

Release Date:

21 January 2011 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

John Carpenter's The Ward  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The flashbacks were filmed after principal shooting on the movie had wrapped. See more »

Goofs

Although Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), formerly known as electroshock, is still used today in the U.S., it is only used as a last resort, with patient consent (except in the most extreme cases), and with the patient anesthetized, not awake and screaming like a tortured banshee as depicted in the film. Also, the ECT machines used in the U.S. today make the procedure quick and relatively painless (e.g., no noticeable twitching or spasming of the muscles). However, the movie is not set in present time but rather in the 60s, as Dr Stringer revealed during his last session with Iris. See more »

Quotes

Kristen: Look at me!
Sarah: Sorry, I don't converse with loonies.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Bad Movie Beatdown: Ghosts of Mars (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Andante
Arranged by Ron Ronsted
Courtesy of APM Music
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User Reviews

 
Is it as bad as everyone makes out?...
9 January 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

John Carpenter has made some of my favourite films, however, his more recent efforts have been a little wide of the mark. So it was with much trepidation that I hit the play button for this one; the reports I'd read had not been encouraging. Sorry to say the reports were right to some extent, although I don't think it deserved some of the vitriolic bile aimed at it. I'll tell you what I mean by that after this brief summary.

When the young Kristen is sent to a psychiatric ward in 1966, she finds herself with a group of young women who all have different problems. On her first night someone steals her blanket and yet she is locked alone in her room. The others, Emily, Sarah, Zoey and Iris are all adamant that there is no way out, but Kristen wants to leave. Things come to a head when she is attacked in the shower; not by one of the other girls, but by a ghost! Investigating, she finds the name, Alice Hudson and, as her fellow inmates begin to disappear one by one she gets more desperate to escape! But there's a problem and her physician, Dr. Stringer, holds the key. I won't say any more or the Spoiler Police will be locking me up (again).

It's all quite well shot, but (to me) it has the feel of quite a low-budget picture. I felt some of the acting was quite forced, if not poor, in places (particularly at the beginning). Since nobody really stood out I will give honourable mentions to; Amber Heard as Kristen, Mamie Gummer as Emily, Danielle Panabaker as Sarah, Laura-Leigh as Zoey, Lyndsy Fonseca as Iris and Jared Harris as Dr. Stringer.

Some of the reviews I've read about this film have been really venomous in their criticism of it. To some extent I agree, John Carpenter is capable of making much better films than this. But on the other hand; what he has produced, if not entirely original, is still quite watchable (after a while) and there are some genuinely frightening moments in it. In conclusion I guess what I'm trying to say is yes, it's not all that good, but at the same time it's not all that bad either. There are some good ideas here but the execution didn't quite work this time… As far as recommendation goes, I'll leave that entirely up to you.

My score: 4.9/10.

IMDb Score: 5.6/10 (based on 10,186 votes at the time of going to press).

Rotten Tomatoes 'Tomatometer' Score: 32/100 (based on 65 reviews counted at the time of going to press).

Rotten Tomatoes 'Audience' Score: 27/100 (based on 9,057 user ratings counted at the time of going to press).


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