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...the notion that we are all being driven mad by an incessant verbal deluge makes nasty comic sense. --The New York Times
Top Customer Reviews
You wouldn't know it, but this little dialogue blip haunted me just long enough to know that, subsequent to viewing the trailer, McDonald's Pontypool would be an experience I would never forget. Just when cinema's zombie revival experiment begins to show signs of banality, we are given a gift from an ambitious director that, although certainly difficult to digest, is one the most compelling and original zombie in ages.
Working with truly terrifying source material, McDonald builds a fortress of tension out of, seemingly, nothing at all. Indeed, nearly the entirety of the film takes place within a radio station, and even then, within the confines of a modest sound booth. That said, it is a testament to the staggering talent of both the director and his team when I say that what is accomplished with so little is utterly unnerving. Even for minimalist cinema, this is a film that works with mere shadows, putting its faith in the audience to fill in the frightening details.
Pontypool is that rare horror film that grows more disturbing upon successive viewings. Given its plot, which I will absolutely not spoil, it is admittedly ironic that, the more you analyze and come to learn, the more creepy things become. It's a stunning achievement that I cannot applaud enough; it goes beyond mere psychological horror, nestling quietly in the voids of the uncanny and the abstract, and it will chill you to the bone.
Indeed, this film oozes a taut indy style that few mainstream features can replicate, all the way down to a genuinely sharp script that gives the impeccably chosen cast something intelligent to work with, especially Stephen McHaddy's, who's performance is the stuff of career breakouts.Read more ›
Grant Mazzy is a shock jock who used to be big on the radio, but now is condemned to the purgatory of a small town local morning show. He wants to challenge people and incite a reaction like he used to, but his supervisor, Sydney Briar, is only concerned with the basics. Weird reports start coming in from various eye witnesses about riots outside of a doctor's office. Over time, the details come together and the picture starts to become clear: people have started to suddenly go insane and attack others. People are being eaten and killed out there. Their town has descended in to chaos and all they can do is try to report what they know, which isn't much. How long will they be safe holed up at the studio? What is really causing this frightening behavior in people?
I read the book this movie was based on and it was very strange and nonlinear. I didn't really know what to expect from the film version, but I braced myself for weirdness. The film is linear in its storytelling, but still has the ambiguity and odd feeling of the novel. The film is separated pretty clearly into 2 parts. The first part is simply establishing the characters and then throwing them into a crazy situation that they struggle to figure out. There are only three main characters: shock jock Grant Mazzy who is desperate to keep some of his edginess in a run of the mill job, Syndney Briar who is Grant's supervisor and sympathizes with him but also wants to keep the necessities in her show without alienating her audience, and Laurel-Ann Drummond who is the idealistic technical assistant and slightly enamored with Grant.Read more ›
The film's setting is the small Ontario hamlet of Pontypool which is beset in the dead of a snowbound winter. Stephen McHattie's character (Grant Mazzy) is a radio personality who has obviously fallen on humbling times. You'll find his character is not only enraged at his agent (for his inability to find him a more prestigious market), but Mazzy has been the architect of his own demise to such a low, meager market. Mazzy is a cynical, opinionated, alcoholic whom we find was drummed-out of previous jobs due to his confrontational style.
Mazzy's rebellious nature surfaces quickly when the station producer/head Sidney Briar (played by Lisa Houle) has to constantly badger him about keeping focused on simply reporting the news and playing music and commercials without providing his usually-biting commentary. A sympathetic ear is lent by assistant Laurel-Ann Drummond (played by Georgina Reilly). These three characters are the principle focus of the movie as the overall plot becomes more apparent. This initial character development was extremely well done.
Reports begin trickling into the station about a heretofore unheard of event in this town: a riot.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Probably the worst movie I saw this year. Was hoping for a good thriller - especially after reading the majority of reviews. Read morePublished 3 months ago by JimY55
and it did hold my attention. One of those movies that feels like a play----this would be great on stage!Published 4 months ago by Timothy McGivney
The main concept of this movie, that a deadly virus can spread by words/repetition causing violence, horror, and death, is not a completely new science fiction concept. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Eileen Arnold
I say 4 1/2 stars because it keeps you on the edge of your seat wondering what's going on. Buy itPublished 6 months ago by King Kilo
DO NOT BUY THIS MOVIE! I'm a fan of many horror movies & I saw a preview for this on another DVD I was watching. The preview looked great, so I got this from Netflix. Read morePublished 8 months ago by John