Review by Gordon Justesen
Barbara Hershey, Ron Silver
Director: Sidney J. Furie
Audio: Dolby Digital Surround
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 2.35:1
Studio: Anchor Bay
Features: See Review
Length: 125 Minutes
Release Date: May 3, 2005
The thought of
someone being constantly attacked by an invisible force is frightening enough.
For Carla Moran, that thought was a reality, and still is to this day. She
suffered from periodic encounters from an invisible presence which attacked
through a feeling of sexual assault. Her terrifying encounters are reflected in
the paranormal thriller, The Entity.
The movie is based
on true events. Moran, played by Barbara Hershey, is a single mother of three
children. Her ordinary life is changed forever the night she finds herself being
raped by an unseen force. Despite repeat encounters, her claims lead everyone
around her to think that she’s completely lost her mind.
Among the people
unconvinced by Carla’s attack story is her best friend, Cindy (Margaret Blye),
as well as her psychologist, Dr. Sniderman (Ron Silver, in top form). The doc
insists that attacks are in her head, and she must find a way to overcome them
somehow. She soon comes across as team of paranormal experts who may have a clue
as to what Carla is under attack from.
As far as horror
movies go, The Entity is somewhat
unique. The notion of an invisible force attacking anyone is a darn good setup,
either if it’s based on true events or not. And there are sequences of
undeniable creepiness, as when Carla is attacked by the force in her bathtub.
At the same time,
what should’ve been an effective and terrifying film is for the most part
repetitive and pretty exploitive. It attempts to induce a feeling of fright by
basically doing the same scene over and over again. To make matters worse, the
invisible force is accompanied by the same thudding music score each time it
Added to that, when
the appearance of the entity is revealed, is a pure letdown. The lackluster
visual effects don’t help the movie either. Even for a movie made in 1981,
better visuals could’ve been a bit more, particularly in the over-the-top
As it turns out,
this is yet another horror film slated for a remake in 2006. Director Hideo
Nakata (The Ring 2) is slated to
direct, and one can only hope that it adds up to a bit more than the original.
Never thought I’d ever be saying that.
video delivery from Anchor Bay is a most impressive, especially for a 20-plus
year old film. The movie is frequently shot in dark settings, with most of the
central action taking place at night. Despite periodic image softness, this is
good enough handling of an 80s film that could’ve easily looked worse.
The 2.0 mix does as
much as it can. The highlight of the presentation are the sequences where the
invisible force attacks its victim. Dialogue is much clear in delivery, and the
overall sound quality is a lot better than expected.
Included is a
documentary titled “The Entity Files”, which delves into the aspects of
similar encounters in real life. There is also a theatrical trailer, and a
screenplay viewable through DVD Rom.