Of Unknown Origin
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Finding an angry rodent swimming in your toilet might be a pretty unpleasant prospect, but cinematically speaking it is far from terrifying. Created using jerky point-of-view shots and creature effects that range from incongruous real-life footage to button-eyed glove puppets, the rat is an unthreatening villain, despite Weller’s best efforts to react in abject horror when he finds the corners of his mail nibbled or his dry groceries spoiled. There are some unsuccessful attempts to make Hughes’ plight more immediate to the audience by references to real-life rat problems--he visits a library to research his enemy and finds some disturbing photographs of rat-attack victims and subsequently ruins a dinner party with a genuinely unsettling rant about infestation and plagues--but it is difficult to feel sorry for him when he can’t even muster the tenacity to track down a professional exterminator. By the time Weller gets caught in one of his own traps, you will probably be roo! ting for the rat anyway, and might take some pleasure from a ridiculous denouement in which, dressed in full battle-gear, he completely destroys his beloved apartment by clumsily chasing the elusive vermin with a nail-studded baseball bat. Gore Verbinski's genuinely hilarious Mousehunt did it with a lot more charm. --Paul Philpott
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As Peter becomes aware of the rat and begins to try and deal with it, he slowly becomes obsessed with freeing his home of the unwanted invader. Obsession grows and Weller sinks deeper and deeper. Work begins to suffer and his secretary and boss begin to worry about him. But whatever the hardship, Weller, like the Old Man, will not let up for a moment. I found the ending of the movie to be quite satisfying with the final lines very neatly tying the whole tale up neatly.
Some may think of this as horror, some suspense, and some tragedy. There are definitely elements of all three involved but any such label would bee to simple for what this movie really is. This is not a very well-known film but it deserves more exposure.
It starts when his wife and young son go on vacation to visit her parents.Soon after Peter starts encountering the rat.He tries to work and the rat is thumping against the ceiling.He tries setting rat poison and rat traps all to no avail.One night the rat comes out of the toilet while he was peeing.Another night after taking in a stray cat he finds it ripped up and killed.He goes to the basment and finds a nest of little rats only to be attacked.The attack scenes are pretty good and actually kind of chilling.The rat completely took over his life.One of my favorite scenes is at the business dinner when Peter starts to spew off all these random facts about rats.The final scene in which he completely destroys his house trying to kill this rat is awesome and shows just how obsessed he has become.
Overall this is a solid flick.It delivers a few nice scares,the music is eery and the setting is also cool.Peter Weller also gives a great and believable performance.Give this movie a chance and you will enjoy this.
Most the other reviewers here applaud Weller's performance. And I must say it's maybe even the strongest one I've seen from him.
He plays the family guy, whose wife (Shannon Tweed in her screen debut) takes the kid and goes off to vacation at her parent's. Weller's character can not go because he's trying to get a deal through at work that could give him a big promotion. Soon after his wife and kid leave, a pretty big damned rat infiltrates Weller's brownstone abode which he has obsessively renovated painstakingly by hand. Basically Weller is a neat freak! And when the rat begins to vandalize the house as rodent's do... He begins to go nutty and obsessive on how to get rid of it... And soon it's a battle of life and death over which one will be king of the castle!
While others associate this film to the likes of Ben and mayhaps even Food of the Gods. I found this film to be rather original! Probably mostly in part to superior characterizations which make the tale work damn good.
The ladies will most likely freak out on this one though. Let's just say the big rat get's quite brazen at times trying to take over the house as his territory! If you think you get it bad enough to keep the seat down! Well then... Don't let 'em see this one!
I think it's a pretty safe bet that well rounded horror afficandos will be pleased with purchasing this one. All others should try to give it the ole' rental first.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I saw this movie on cable TV....Had to have it....Thanks!!!!!Published 5 months ago by Arlivia N. Lee
"Of Unknown Origin" is a very well made suspense/creature feature. Peter Weller is a believable actor in an unbelievable film. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Ralph Hall
I once saw this movie years ago. My daughter has never seen it before. Thanks alot and I appreciated the fast service!!Published 9 months ago by lori
On time shipping and loved the movie.I read somewhere it didn't make a killing at the box office. It should have.Published 10 months ago by Mark Chocianowski
I saw this in a theater when it was released. Just as good many years later. Over the top acting by Peter Weller made this extremely enjoyable! Read morePublished 11 months ago by drforbin
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