The almost always reliable Laura Linney (YOU CAN COUNT ON ME) isn't very good in
THE MOTHMAN PROPHECIES, but, to be fair, it's not her fault. A thriller that
tries to be THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT for grown-ups with a little GROUNDHOG DAY
thrown in as well, the picture is a disjointed and incomprehensible mess.
Supposedly based on actual events that transpired in Point Pleasant, West
Virginia, the movie makes no sense. No matter how many times he shoots scenes
through red filters, Mark Pellington (ARLINGTON ROAD) can't make us care enough
to attempt to decipher who or what the Mothman is. The only thing that we're
sure of is that we were going to have to endure almost two entire hours of this
The film starts off promisingly with its one effectively scary episode.
Washington Post reporter John Klein (Richard Gere) and his wife Mary (Debra
Messing) have a frightening encounter with a shadowy, moth-like figure. "You
didn't see him, did you?" Mary asks rhetorically. "See what?" John replies
Although we never really get to see the creature, we do learn of his powers,
which include premonitions like "99 will die!" and "Wake up number 37." Like a
bad case of the flu, he, she or it causes puffy eyes and other such ailments.
When the movie finally gets to its very long concluding incident, in which a
massive number of people are in peril, you'll be probably thinking what I did --
"Oh die, already!" so we can finally put this movie in its grave.
THE MOTHMAN PROPHECIES runs 1:53. It is rated PG-13 for "terror, some sexuality
and language" and would be acceptable for teenagers.
Copyright © 2002 Steve Rhodes