Every town has its own ghost story, and a local folktale around Ravens Fair is about a ventriloquist named Mary Shaw. After she went mad in the 1940s, she was accused of kidnapping a young boy who yelled out in one of her performances that she was a fraud. Because of this she was hunted down by townspeople who in the ultimate act of revenge, cut out her tongue and then killed her. They buried her along with her "children," a handmade collection of vaudeville dolls, and assumed they had silenced her forever. However, Ravens Fair has been plagued by mysterious deaths around them after Mary Shaws collection has returned from their graves and have come to seek revenge on people that killed her and their families. Far from the pall of their cursed hometown, newlyweds Jamie and Lisa Ashen thought they had established a fresh start, until Jamie's wife is grotesquely killed in their apartment. Jamie returns to Ravens Fair for the funeral, intent on unraveling the mystery of Lisa's death. Once...Written by
Leigh Whannell was so unhappy with the finished product, due to studio interference, that he decided to write all future scripts on spec, as opposed to pitching an idea to a studio and then being paid to write the screenplay, as was the case with this film. See more »
When Henry's father is recreating Mary Shaw's body, Billy the doll is clean in one shot but dirty and broken in the next. See more »
[reciting the nursery rhyme]
Beware the stare of Mary Shaw / She had no children, only dolls / And if you see her in your dreams / Be sure to never ever scream.
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The 1930s Universal Pictures logo is used in the opening credits. See more »
Unrated DVD contains the following extended shots which were omitted from the "R" rated version.
Mary Shaw has a creepy, disgusting, long tongue.
A gorier death for Henry, as Mary Shaw is shown eating Henry's tongue and saying "I now have your voice, Henry."
The tongue comes out and licks Jamie after the clown admits the "secret" to him about his wife.
What can I say...I liked Saw, I'm scared of Ventriloquist Dummiess, this movie was a sure hit, right? Well...
My expectations were fairly high, I suppose. I was expecting a more intellectual, (or maybe just more interesting) plot. Let me cover the things this movie did well and what it lacked.
On the good side, the movie had a nice style to it. There were some legitimately scary scenes (cinemagraphically). The music was also appropriate, and they definitely took some chances, which is nice to see.
However, the entire movie is based on a fairly generic concept, and a very uninspired script. Don't get me wrong, the movie "works," but there is nothing to this movie beyond its base concept- no depth, no real characterization, and honestly, very few explanations at all. The end should tie everything together, but instead reveals how shallow the story really is.
Bottom line, it's the kind of movie that could easily be lost in the sea of other generic horror movies out there. I almost feel the story may have worked better as a farce, because it just didn't try hard enough as a horror.
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