Reviews & Counting
# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
White Noise(2005)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Geoffrey Sax

Michael Keaton/Jonathan
Chandra West/Anna
Deborah Kara Unger/Sarah
Ian McNeice/Raymond
4 10
Jonathan’s (Keaton) wife goes “bye bye”. So he mopes in his crib until spouse communicates with him via Electronic Voice Phenomenon (EVP). What is she trying to convey to him! What’s the screenplay trying to transmit to us? Why do some men pee sitting down? Ask Keaton’s eyebrows!
I missed out on this rambling rambler when it hit the big screen and today I finally got to see what the White Noise (hitting the DVD shelves on May 17, 2005) was all about. So was it worth the plate of Nachos and the 6 pack of Bud? Here it goes amigos!

White Noise had me by the “Hacky-Sack” off the bat with its stylish opening credit reel. Nice unsettling mood and editing on that one! And when the premise finally kicked in, I found it fairly compelling (didn’t know about EVP, I know now). I dug on the melo-drama as well (I’m a sucker for dead/missing wives plot lines) and even though he wasn’t at his best, its always swell to see Michael “I’m Batman” Keaton in the lead again. So for the first 40 minutes or so, I was Crazy Glued to the screen via the strategically paced chain of events, the many chilling moments, the potent directing choices (loved the use of sound/silence) and the potentially gripping mystery at hand. I was having all kinds of "The Mothman Prophecies" flashbacks over here and since I highly boogied to the latter, I was confident that I was in for the same type of genre lube job. I was RIP wrong.

Wretchedly, at about 50 minutes in, I realized that this movie was pulling a "Brando" on me where it wasn't gonna show up on set. The tension filled build-up, the creepy screeching radio/TVs and the boo scares were in reality“smoke screens”, to disguise the fact that the story had no freaking clue as to where it was going. Sure familiar conventions/plot turns were curve-balled my way non-stop (with one of them going as far as copping out...urg), but they went on to act as “cheap filler” instead of actually meaning something. So redundancy imminently kicked in, my patience ran the thin red line and in the end I felt more cheated than Martin Scorsese at The Oscars. What the hell was up with the “why” behind the lunacy? Talk about flatter than Paris Hilton stuck under a bulldozer! Not only that, it was muddled beyond belief and from what I understood…damn STUPID. It should also be said that there’s nothing like an orgy of CG beasties to kill a film that was playing it “grounded” thus far. You haven’t lived a full existence, until you’ve seen Michael Keaton “Mortal Kombat” with a trio of computer effects…LUDICROUS!

So when all was said and zipper, zipped up, even though I had a good time with half of White Noise, its second helping showed its true, faded colors. It never had a clear course to begin with and when it came time to pay the piper, it paid him with fake pennies. I’ll stick to love-box-farts when it comes to white noises thank you very much…let this one go on deaf ears! I'm out of puns...
Does Michael Keaton’s bad hair dye and some shoddy CG count?
Michael Keaton (Jonathan) had his moments but I felt that he underplayed the part a tad too much. Show me some life man! Where’s Dick Gere when you need him! Chandra West (Anna) had the look for the role and was decent when “acting”. Is it me or does, Deborah Kara Unger (Sarah) play the same damn part in every film? She did okay but I had all kinds of “déjà-vues”! Somebody forgot to tell Ian McNeice (Raymond) that this was a Michael Keaton movie not Hamlet on the BC stage. He was way too theatrical, especially when acting with the uber-subdued Keaton. Its called “chi-cha” bro…smoke it and ….RELAXXXXX!
T & A
Again...does Michael Keaton’s bad hair dye and shoddy CG count?
There was a constant tug of war here between “stylish” and “TV Movie of the week” here. On one end Geoffrey Sax displayed an able eye, an effective use of sound/silence and a groovy way setting up scary scenes via inserts of mundane objects. On the other end, some of the more dramatic bits had “Days of Our Lives”, point and shoot written all over them.
The score by Claude Foisy was sad and somber enough for me to say “I dig this”.
White Noise had a handful of solid marbles in its hands. I'm talking an appealing premise, effective directing, gnarly frightening bits and a riveting pace for half of its running time. So you can imagine how f*ckered I felt when I found out it was all for nada, Jack-Tracy, zilch…NATHING! The flick was dicking me around for all that time! What an utter jerk! Take those “copy/paste” plot turns, that throwaway “explanation” & your CG Glad-Bags and shove them up your White Noise! I wasted my Nachos and Budweisers’ on this phony baloney crap, don’t waste yours man!
Michael Keaton's next film is Herbie: Fully Loaded...dude...FIRE YOUR AGENT! What happened to the "One Good Cop" Keaton? COME ON BRO!

This was TV Director Geoffrey Sax's first feature.

Screenwriter Niall Johnson also wrote The Big Swap (1998) and the upcoming Keeping Mum (2006).

Chandra West...call me...I got a cheese burger over here with your name on it!