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Dead Silence (2007)

A young widower returns to his hometown to search for answers to his wife's murder, which may be linked to the ghost of a murdered ventriloquist.

Director:

James Wan

Writers:

Leigh Whannell (screenplay), James Wan (story) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ryan Kwanten ... Jamie Ashen
Amber Valletta ... Ella Ashen
Donnie Wahlberg ... Det. Lipton
Michael Fairman ... Henry Walker
Joan Heney Joan Heney ... Marion Walker
Bob Gunton ... Edward Ashen
Laura Regan ... Lisa Ashen
Dmitry Chepovetsky ... Richard Walker
Judith Roberts ... Mary Shaw
Keir Gilchrist ... Young Henry
Steven Taylor Steven Taylor ... Michael Ashen
David Talbot David Talbot ... Priest
Steve Adams ... 1941 Detective
Shelley Peterson Shelley Peterson ... Lisa's Mom
Enn Reitel ... Billy (voice)
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Storyline

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 Christopher Hernandez

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

You scream. You die.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MySpace | Official site [Japan] | See more »

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 March 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shhhh... See more »

Filming Locations:

Elora, Ontario, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,842,725, 18 March 2007

Gross USA:

$16,809,076

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$22,382,047
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (unrated)

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

(at around 1h 10 mins) During the climax, in the storage area with all 101 dolls, you can see Jigsaw's doll from the "Saw" films sitting on the floor, and Edgar Bergen's doll Charlie McCarthy on one of the shelves. The doll that Detective Lipton throws over his shoulder in this scene is a replica of ventriloquist Jimmy Nelson's doll, Danny O'Day. See more »

Goofs

When Detective Lipton interrogates Jamie on the death of Lisa, actor Ryan Kwanten accidentally flubs his line and says her name as Liser. See more »

Quotes

[first title card]
Title Card: In the 6th Century B.C. it was believed that the spirits of the dead would speak through the stomach region of the living.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits starts with a dedication to producer Gregg Hoffman. See more »

Alternate Versions

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.
See more »


Soundtracks

Let It Go
Written by Bob Mair, Dino Soldo
Performed by Bob Mair, Dino Soldo
Courtesy of Black Toast Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Nightmare fuel with something creepy for everyone
17 March 2007 | by yfguitaristSee all my reviews

If you have nightmares easily, I suggest staying away from this film: it's pure nightmare fuel. If you have an active imagination, you could have trouble sleeping with the film's imagery burned into the back of your eyeballs.

The story's intriguing enough. There just aren't enough horror films these days about menacing old ventriloquist ladies that are buried with their creepy dolls, who have come back from the dead to seek vengeance on the families that put her in the grave, by tearing out their tongues. The atmosphere is heavy, the creepy music is provided by SAW'S Charlie Clouser, the colors are washed out, and the sets are surreal.

Many will dismiss it as a formulaic, clichéd horror film. The SAW creators, who are huge horror fans, have fun making their own version of the American horror film by throwing in plenty of classic tropes such as the wise-cracking detective (Donnie Wahlberg) and the crazy old lady that knows more than she should.

I was pleased that the film didn't shy away from gore: it wasn't gratuitous, but it did enhance the horror. Most ghost stories tend to be separate from the gore flicks (I'm a fan of both), but I always enjoy seeing them combined. Another aspect that was interesting was the "silence" mode that signaled the presence of evil.

It's got plenty of horror elements to provide scares: aged film, folk tales, singing children, antique furniture, voice recordings fading out, flickering lights, dead loved ones beckoning from beyond the grave, photographs of dead families, cackling old women, wide-eyed dolls, billowing curtains, plenty of thunder and lightning, open caskets, dank crawlspaces, and a pervading sense of evil throughout.

Critics won't dig it, but I've shown it to two groups of friends and the majority were terrified and claimed it to be one of the scariest movies they'd seen. If you're a fan of atmospheric horror that aims to creep you to the bone, you should be more than pleased.


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