[Screen It]


(1997) (Laurence Fishburne, Sam Neill) (R)

Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Tense Scenes
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Mild Extreme Extreme None Extreme
Smoking Tense Family
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Sci-fi/Horror: A group of astronauts boards a spaceship that's been missing for seven years and discover that it's returned with a horrifying secret.
It's the year 2047 and the "Event Horizon," a ship designed to bend the space time continuum, has been found after being lost for seven years. A rescue ship, the "Lewis & Clark," helmed by Captain Joe Miller (LAURENCE FISHBURNE), heads to Neptune where the Event Horizon is in orbit. On board is Dr. William Wier (SAM NEILL), the scientist who designed the ship, along with the crew consisting of Smith (SEAN PERTWEE), the pilot, and Starck (JOELY RICHARDSON), Peters (KATHLEEN QUINLAN), Cooper (RICHARD T. JONES), Justin (JACK NOSEWORTHY) and D.J. (JASON ISAACS). Finding that something horrible happened to the original crew, they board the dead ship and reactivate her controls. Once inside, they realize that something has returned with the ship from its distant travels, something that can read their minds and display or recreate their worst fears and memories. As Wier is "visited" by Claire, his dead wife, Miller has an encounter with a dead former crew mate, Peters sees her injured son, and the others have similarly spooky encounters. Soon Wier seemingly becomes possessed by the ship and it's all Miller and his crew can do to get off it.
If they're fans of horror or sci-fi films they most likely will.
The reason was not available, but we'd guess it was for intense, frightening scenes, profanity, violence, and copious amount of blood.
  • SAM NEILL plays a scientist who slowly becomes possessed by the ship and won't let anyone leave and kills people who try to.
  • LAURENCE FISHBURNE plays the gruff captain of the rescue ship who must do what he can to get out of a weird, deadly situation.


    OUR TAKE: 8 out of 10
    For those of you who think that "Scream" and other recent horror films are frightening, take our word for it -- get yourself to a theater to see what scary really is. Masterfully balancing sci-fi, horror and action, "Event Horizon" is a superbly made film that feels just like a thrilling amusement park ride. With as many jump scenes as a roller coaster has hills, this film elicits the same visceral response. First come the screams, followed by the nervous laughter that shows how much we appreciate the clever scare tactics. Listening to the audience react is nearly as much fun as watching the movie, although you can easily forget anyone else is in the theater while getting drawn into the story. Based on the 1972 Soviet film, "Solaris," this film borrows its plot -- an entity reads minds and displays the results with the main character being visited by his dead wife -- and jolts it up a degree. Feeling like "The Shining" (1980 with Jack Nicholson) in space, this film stands apart from nearly every horror film made in the past decade. The reasons for this are varied. First, it has a general spooky quality about it. When a film gets under your skin and makes the goose bumps stand at attention many times, it has then succeeded at mastering the genre. The film also avoids the common trappings of most horror films where the people are too stupid for their own good (ie. walking down dimly lit hallways by themselves, etc...). Here, the characters may be hallucinating, dreaming, or are so mesmerized by what they see that they, and we, are pulled right into the scary areas. Equally compelling is the sci-fi element of the film that will also delight fans of that genre. Sporting a gritty, more "realistic" look than most recent sci-fi films (think of "Alien" compared to the "Star Trek" films), the production values and set design are first rate. And there's enough action and general suspense scenes to tie everything together. The film also boasts a great cast with Neill delivering a fine, increasingly deranged role and Fishburne making up for his last action role in the disastrous "Fled." Here, he strongly commands the screen and proves to be a superb action figure. The rest of the cast is just as solid although everyone knows that many of them are there just as fodder for the film's horror grinder. Although some plot elements are never fully explored -- such as what's behind the "evil" control, and what the deeper back stories are for the characters personal visions/encounters -- the mystery of these elements only adds to the film's overall uneasy atmosphere. While this is an extremely thrilling, scary film, it's also extremely bloody and obviously won't be appreciated by all moviegoers. For those looking for the best scary film to be released in the past ten to fifteen years, however, this is the ticket for the thrill ride of the summer. We give "Event Horizon" an 8 out of 10.
    This is one of the scariest and bloodiest films to come down the pike in some years and for those who are fans of the horror and sci-fi genres, this will probably be very entertaining to them. It will also scare the daylights out of most children -- and many adults. Any child who has the potential of getting nightmares from what they see on screen probably shouldn't see this film because it will induce many bad dreams. Beyond the frightening aspects, there are many scenes that will make you jump, and others that will gross you out with the copious amounts of blood and gore. A bare-breasted woman is seen, but the context of seeing her is more for horror than eroticism. Along with the violence, profanity is extreme. The film does deal with some kind of possession (be it alien, demonic, etc...) and some suggest that the ship has been to Hell. Thus, some viewers may not like those plot elements. For all of the above reasons, we strongly urge you to examine the scene listings to determine whether this is something you'd want yourself and/or your children to see.

  • None.
  • The crew discovers frozen blood on the bridge in several locations.
  • A frozen, mutilated body with no eyes floats through the Event Horizon, and when gravity is reestablished, it crashes to the ground and shatters into a bloody, meaty mess.
  • Peters sees her son, and his legs are all bloody and torn up.
  • Justin stands in an airlock and as the pressure drops, his veins start to bulge and eventually blood squirts from all parts of his body and gushes from his mouth and other parts of his head.
  • A quickly cut montage of shots shows very bloody people.
  • A crew member falls to her death and is very bloody as a result.
  • A woman slits her wrists with a straight razor and lots of blood flows out and Wier sees her in a bathtub full of blood.
  • Wier's face is extremely bloody after having gouged his own eyes out.
  • Wier cuts open a man (the cutting is not seen) and blood pours from the dead man's mouth. Later, his bloody body hangs by wires from the ceiling.
  • A raging river of blood flows through the ship and then bursts out and engulfs several crew members.
  • A charred man, engulfed in flames, is seen in several scenes.
  • Wier becomes possessed by the ship and won't let anyone leave and kills some who try. Thus, in that respect he has both types of attitudes.
  • The film deals with some kind of possession (be it alien, demonic, etc...) and some suggest that the ship has been to Hell. Thus, some viewers may not like those plot elements.
  • The film is filled with haunted house type scary scenes where weird events, coupled with scary music, make for a very spooky, eerie atmosphere.
  • Many of the jump scenes that occur are obviously scary or are at the end of frightening scenes.
  • Wier sees his dead wife and slowly walks up to her. When she turns around, her eyes are black (or are missing).
  • A floating, cut off hand (or glove) hits a crew person, startling them.
  • Justin is suddenly pulled into the core drive -- the time portal of the ship -- and must be rescued.
  • An explosion sets the Lewis & Clark on fire and the crew races to put it out and then abandon the ship.
  • Justin has convulsions on a medical table and then suddenly grabs another crew member.
  • Wier works in a small tunnel when the lights start going on and off and he hears his wife calling his name and she suddenly appears next to him with black, dead eyes.
  • A body, fully engulfed in flames, comes up out of a pool of water and comes after Miller.
  • Something starts banging on and denting a metal door as "it" tries to get to the crew.
  • Justin, possessed by something, goes into the airlock and prepares to jettison himself out into space. The crew frantically works to open the door while Miller races from the outside to stop him.
  • A quickly cut montage of shots shows very bloody people and they're all screaming.
  • Peters sees her son again and follows him through the ship and meets her untimely death.
  • A woman slits her wrists with a straight razor.
  • The crew members discover that Wier has hidden a bomb on their ship and they race to find it.
  • An explosion sends Cooper flying through space and he must hurry to take action to get back to the ship.
  • Miller slowly makes his way through the ship as he hunts for Wier.
  • A hole in the ship sucks stuff out into space and Miller and Starck struggle to keep from being sucked out as well.
  • Miller sets explosives and has another encounter with the burning man who comes after him.
  • Another longer, but still quickly cut, montage shows more bleeding and screaming people.
  • The entire end of the movie is one long, tense sequence.
  • Futuristic Gun: Used by Wier to shoot at Cooper and Miller.
  • Explosives: Used to destroy parts of both ships and to kill several people.
  • Phrases: "Kiss my ass" and "Bastard."
  • Starck gives Cooper "the finger" after he makes a lewd comment to her.
  • A woman slits her wrists with a straight razor.
  • The movie is filled with many, many scenes that will make you jump in, or out of your seat. Note: Some of the effect is created/enhanced by the use of sudden, loud music or sound effects. Thus, when seen in a theater with a good sound system, many of these jump scenes will be more effective than in a theater with low or poor sound reproduction.
  • There is an extreme amount of suspenseful music throughout the film, akin to what's found in a "haunted house" type movie.
  • None.
  • At least 24 "f" words (1 using "mother"), 16 "s" words, 4 hells, 1 damn, 1 ass, and 3 uses of "Oh my God," 2 uses each of "Jesus" and "Oh God," and 1 use each of "G-damn" and "For God's sakes" as exclamations.
  • A female crew member shows quite a bit of cleavage while bending over in a tank top shirt.
  • When offering Starck some coffee, Cooper (who's black) asks, "Don't you want something hot and black inside you?"
  • Weir's wife's bare breasts are seen several times when he has an encounter with her. Nowhere near erotic, the scene is played to be scary.
  • Several of the crew members, including Miller, smoke in a few scenes.
  • Wier sees his wife commit suicide again (by slashing her wrists).
  • Peters mentions that she and her husband will have split custody of her son. Later, she often sees her injured boy and at other times she follows him, wanting to protect him.
  • Space travel and the theory of relativity.
  • All of the scary stuff that happens in the story and what causes it.
  • An explosion rips through the Event Horizon into the Lewis & Clark causing a great deal of damage to the latter.
  • Smith goes after Wier, pushing him, and then is pulled away by D.J. who holds a blade to his throat.
  • A crew member dies by falling several stories to her death.
  • A bomb explodes and kills several crew members along with destroying a ship.
  • Wier gouges his own eyes out.
  • Wier grabs a crew member and throws him about the ship.
  • Wier takes a medical device and cuts a man open (the incision is not seen -- but the spurting blood is).
  • Wier tosses Starck across the room and then fires a weapon at Cooper and at Miller.
  • A burning man attacks Miller and knocks him across a room, setting him on fire.
  • Miller and Wier fight each other with punches thrown and Miller beats Wier with a metal pipe.
  • An explosion destroys a ship and kills several people.

  • Reviewed August 13, 1997

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