The Mist (2007)
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Review Date: May 28, 2008
Director: Frank Darabont
Writer: Frank Darabont
Producers: Frank Darabont, Liz Glotzer
Thomas Jane as David
Marcia Gay Harden as Mrs. Carmody
Laurie Holden as Amanda
A thick smog crawls into a small town right after a major storm and spooks people enough to barricade themselves inside stores. The film focuses on one particular group who hole themselves up in a grocery store, led by the great Thomas Jane and his son. After a while, crazy bugs and shit start coming out of the mist and killing folk. Needless to say, the barricaded people are scared and so are we…a little. Suspense, blood, giant insects and a crazy-ass bitch with a messiah complex…ensues!!
I enjoyed a lot of things about this movie but there were also a number of small elements that bothered me enough not to grade it that much higher than I ultimately did and first and foremost on that list is the extremely annoying and persistent character played by Marcia Gay Harden, a character who was truly one of the most irritating people I have seen on the big screen in a long, long time!! In fact, I was begging for her to get killed about 30 minutes into the movie (mostly so she can just shut the fuck up!), but unfortunately for me, she lasted and lasted and lasted. In fact, it’s a character like that, that will likely keep me away from a second shot at this movie anytime soon. Really folks, she annoyed the crap out of me and not only because of her ultra-religious stance, but even moreso because she had several scenes in which she’s just preaching and preaching and preaching…hey Darabont, shut this lady up already…we get it, it’s the “end of the world”, bla-bla-fuckin’-bla! Okay…I got all that out of my system! As for the rest of the film, it’s really a well made piece of cinema, reminiscent of the old “Twilight Zone” episodes in which everything and everybody seems based in reality and on the up-and-up, but then all of a sudden, poof…shit starts getting really weird, and as an audience, you’re left wondering what the hell is going on for quite some time.

I enjoyed that entire aspect, appreciated the major bouts of suspense throughout the movie, loved the lead character played awesomely by the underrated Thomas Jane (why doesn’t this man get cast in more high-profile movies?) and obviously really loved the film’s ending – which I won’t give away here – but which is truly one of the better (darker) endings that I’ve seen in quite some time. I enjoy happy endings as much as the next guy, but when it makes sense to make things more realistic, I think there’s a place for that too. Other elements I enjoyed in the film included the many gross-out and bloody sequences (this is a horror movie, folks…no doubt about it), the interesting range of characters stuck in the grocery store (save for one and I’ll let you “guess” which one I’m talking about) and the many crazy insects and bugs which ultimately go STARSHIP TROOPER on this small town. On the downside, some of the CGI was pretty noticeable (the tentacles were pretty badly done), the film ran a little too long, especially when you consider that much of it took place in one store and the writer/director gave that one crazy loon bitch waaaaay too much of a soap-box upon which to stand. I enjoy watching humans turn on one another in apocalyptic situations on film, but when the emphasis turns to one nutjob with a Jim Jones’ complex, I’m a looooot less interested in following along with the storyline. But overall, if you’re looking for a decent suspenseful horror flick with a penchant for big-ass bugs and bloody murders, this film will certainly appease those desires. It’s not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but it does bring with it some major balls when the conclusion finally hits. I’m a little torn on this one, but overall, I’d definitely recommend it to those interested in the story. PS: Nice homage to Carpenter’s THE THING in the opening sequence.
(c) 2018 Berge Garabedian

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