When movie makers draw on the seasoned nature of their talents, good works are bound to follow. Friedkin followed in Hitchcock’s footsteps when he created his masterpiece, and Ridley Scott pioneered the conglomeration of these two styles by adding a touch of technology. What is key between the three, is that great lengths are taken to prepare the viewer for a moment that will never be forgotten. The Fourth Kind has tapped into this element.
Though both the slasher type movies and the true hair-raising scare films apply the use of traditional movie-making effects, one can tell boredom is on the way when the sappy, contemporary teen music begins to play when the super-model teen begins to chew gum with all her silly friends: The true movie that will disturb people will avoid this feature, and instead of bumbling little girls, this one has, to be simple about the matter, nothing other than: the owl. Thus the use of sophisticated music scores, calm, traversing plot techniques that make people feel as though they’re experiencing activity that resembles what happens in their own homes, use of top, A-class acting, and the notion of verisimilitude–the aspect of anthropology that has haunted mankind for as long as mankind has been aware of itself (the idea that God really exists), makes for an experience that is tough to shake.
To be specific about these better techniques: the idea is to pull the viewer along eventually into a scene, where all the plot devices have been hashed out, and everyone basically knows what to expect, and yet the utterly unexpected occurs causing what is known in psychology as, “flashbulb memory.” These are the type of memories that are burned into the conscious and the subconscious with such impact that to forget the memory is completely impossible, with the exception of a head-injury. Even worse, is when a movie like this gets away with a PG-13 rating, yet carries the impact to scar a 13yr old for life.
Watch The Fourth Kind at your own risk, and watch it with a friend, not alone; and if you’re used to watching movies with headphones on by yourself, be prepared for a slight torrent of emotion, that is, if you’re freaked easily; especially since the film is intermingled with true-to-life footage. Though I consider myself desensitized, I had a bad dream the very night I watched it.
On a side note, I once lived in a relatively small town in Oregon. We were looking to find a more secluded place to live, with the intention of living upon the hillside where the beautiful evergreens fill the air with the continual scent of pine. An ad we found led us to a road that took us into one of these remote areas, where my car wasn’t able to negotiate the rocks; and darn that I didn’t have my camera, because as we marched by foot to at least look at the place, there in the late afternoon light of a sunray beaming through the tall pines, was the weirdest sign that dared to warn us of the consequences if we decided to actually move up there.