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Signs (2002)

PG-13 | | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi | 2 August 2002 (USA)
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A family living on a farm finds mysterious crop circles in their fields which suggests something more frightening to come.

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3 wins & 34 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Rev. Graham Hess
... Merrill Hess
... Morgan Hess
... Bo Hess
... Officer Paski
... Ray Reddy
... Colleen Hess
... SFC Cunningham
... Tracey Abernathy, the Pharmacist
... Mr. Nathan
... Mrs. Nathan
... Lionel Prichard
Kevin Pires ... Brazilian Birthday Boy
... Columbia University Professor
Rhonda Overby ... Sarah Hughes
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Storyline

Preacher Graham Hess, played by Mel Gibson, has lost his faith in God after his wife dies in a brutal car accident. He along with his son and daughter and his brother Merrill lives in a farmhouse. Crop circles begin to appear in their corn fields which Graham dismisses as mischief by miscreants. After hearing strange noises and watching news coverage on crop circles appearing all over the world, the family grows suspicious of alien activities. Now they must stick together and believe, as a family to survive the ordeal and find a way to escape. Written by Radhakrishnan

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The first sign you can't explain. The second sign you can't ignore. The third sign you won't believe. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some frightening moments | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

2 August 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

M. Night Shyamalan's Signs  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$72,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$60,117,080, 4 August 2002, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$227,966,634

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$408,247,917
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

(DuArt)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was an unconventional role for Mel Gibson, who says he doesn't play characters so "introspective." See more »

Goofs

The Army recruiter's uniform ribbons are in an incorrect order. See more »

Quotes

Morgan: [seeing his father staring at them in slight confusion as to why they have their heads wrapped in tinfoil] It's so the aliens can't read our minds.
Graham Hess: [in a placidly-resigned playing-along-and-almost-half-believing-it-himself-at-that-point tone] Oh - - oh, of course.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In Memory of Bill Nisselson - June 19, 2001 See more »

Connections

Featured in Nostalgia Critic: Signs (2012) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Unspeakably brilliant
5 August 2002 | by See all my reviews

In last week's issue of Newsweek, M. Night Shyamalan is quoted as saying to his accomplices in crime, "If I did 'Pokemon 5,' would you come? Come on! I could turn it into a metaphor for the human condition!" The scary thing about that comment is not only that he probably *could* do it if afforded the opportunity, but also that he pulls off a similar trick in "Signs," which from an artistic standpoint is easily the best film he's ever done.

The greater picture of the film is the crop signs that suddenly and quickly start appearing worldwide - and the question of whether they mean anything for mankind as a whole. But once the greater picture is laid out in the first twenty minutes, it takes a complete backseat to Shyamalan's happy & pained family of four, and focuses on their feelings, their worries, their doubts; as the horror of what's transpiring in the greater picture creeps closer to them.

When Merrill says, "It's like War of the Worlds," it's NOT hyperbole, even though we never see what transpires in the greater picture. Instead, Shyamalan focuses on the subtle nuances of the fear of the individual. Instead of seeing hundreds of soldiers fighting in hand-to-hand combat with gigantic bugs, we gain an appreciation of what it's like for those who aren't blessed with such courage - or, in Graham Hess' case, being able to find it again.

This is the first horror movie I've ever seen that both genuinely scared me - because you sympathize with the family's plight, even without seeing it - and made me laugh at the same time, because the family's reaction to the terror unfolding in the world is a sign itself of a strength that most don't have - the ability to be levelheaded and always keep things in perspective, no matter how scary or "out-there" the situation is.

As usual, Shyamalan gets excellent performances out of all of his actors, especially Willis & Breslin as Graham & Bo. As usual, everything you see means something - the trick, like with "Sixth Sense" & "Unbreakable, is whether or not you can put them all together. I'd be shocked, though, if this film doesn't get nominated for its sound - the soundtrack is Hitchcockian-creepy, and Shyamalan is a master at using sound effects to create the terror that the visual effects normally do.

Don't go to "Signs" expecting a monster movie, or a shock ending, but definitely see it before the summer's out, and be prepared to be moved in ways that you previously couldn't have imagined from a horror or suspense film. It's been said that a genius of film is one who knows how to transcend or reinvent a genre - and with this film, M. Night Shyamalan is decidedly on his way there, if he hasn't already reached it. 10/10


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