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The Ferryman

3.1 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Ferryman

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Editorial Reviews

Out on a dead calm ocean, in a thick fog, a group of tourists on a pleasure craft are about to cross paths with an ancient and terrible evil. Sharing the same ocean, a sick, dying old Greek man drifts alone on a stricken yacht. The Greek (John Rhys-Davies) has been cheating death for countless years. Trading broken bodies for new ones over centuries.

With him he carries a deadly weapon that allows him to do this. This weapon, the Shifting Blade, gives its possessor an awesome power.

But now is the time of reckoning. The Ferryman, the ancient conveyor of death and the path to the afterlife is close and he wants the Greek. There is a payment to be made.


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: John Rhys-Davies, Kerry Fox, Tamer Hassan, Amber Sainsbury, Craig Hall
  • Directors: Chris Graham
  • Writers: Matthew Metcalfe, Nick Ward
  • Producers: Alan Harris, Matthew Metcalfe, Paul Brett, Richard Fletcher, Tim Smith
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    R
    Restricted
  • Studio: Alchemy / Millennium
  • DVD Release Date: September 25, 2007
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000R348Q2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #147,105 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Ferryman" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Michael Butts HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on October 3, 2007
Format: DVD
I'm surprised more horror movies haven't tapped into the legendary Ferryman story. This one doesn't take place on the river Styx but in the Pacific.
THE FERRYMAN is heavy on atmospheric mysticism and has a few disturbing scenes, and for a film of its genre, it's decent enough. The story focuses on some kind of spirit that has eluded the Ferryman for years by using a magic knife that allows him to jump from body to body. SLIDERS and INDIANA JONES' John Rhys Davies plays the first spirit who then manages to take over six more bodies from three couples on a cruise to Fiji. I also wish they would have used Chris DeBurgh's original DON'T PAY THE FERRYMAN instead of the horrible remake. But it's a decent horror film for fans.
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Format: DVD
Six people go sailing on a boat, find Jon Rhys-Davies, and then start dying. I love Mr. Rhys-Davies, but lately his name on a film hasn't been an indication of quality. Surprisingly, The Ferryman actually delivers.

The Ferryman is about a body-hopping sorcerer who wields an enchantedknife. Whomever he stabs with the knife swaps bodies with him. We start in media res with the final two inhabitants of another voyage battling each other to death, before only the Greek (Rhys-Davies) is left. Of course, our six victims pick him up.

There's not a lot of room on the boat to maneuver, but The Ferryman works with its limited set. The Ferryman is thick with accents (it was filmed in Australia) and some cultural nuances may be lost on American audience (references to the Maori). Because there's not much to do on the boat, there's actually quite a bit of dialogue between the various victims. The conflicts take place primarily between genders, as the couples' relationships are strained by the intrusion of an ancient sorcerer who happens to enjoy women.

The movie hinges on two actresses: hot blonde Sally Stockwell (Tate) and cute brunette Amber Sainsbury (Kathy). Kathy gets some supernatural help in visions of a dead little girl she was unable to save in her past life as a nurse. That deus ex machina gives Kathy the knowledge she needs to defeat the possessed Tate: an obloi, the Greek coin to pay Charon so that he may ferry the dead across the river Styx.

An undercurrent of sexual tension crackles throughout The Ferryman. The sorcerer's taste in women is persistent regardless of gender and he isn't above manipulating the various attractive females into compromising positions. Even the climactic battle at the end involves a lesbian kiss.
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Format: DVD
This isn't a great horror film, but it delivers.

Six city folk on a boat, in the middle of nowhere, shrouded in fog. That makes for a nicely claustrophobic atmosphere. They see another boat, apparently abandoned.

Abandoned "ghost ships" are a horror staple, but the trope is well handled here. Eerie and spooky.

These people find a lone survivor on board -- a grizzled sailor -- but of course, he's not what he seems. They bring him aboard their own boat and, well, it's kind of like ANACONDA, when those nice city folk brought the grizzled Jon Voight aboard their boat. Not a good idea, trapped in the middle of nowhere with a mysterious stranger.

In this case, the sailor turns out to be supernatural. He has the ability to switch bodies -- but he must kill to do it. And he keeps switching bodies, so the body count mounts. Happily, it's a generous body count, with lots of good guy/sympathetic victims. That's important in a horror film.

Once the killings start, the pace never lets up.

It's a basic horror tale, with basic character types. The bitchy blonde and her hen-pecked wuss of a boyfriend. The smart brunette and her strong, silent type beau. Even so, there are shocks and surprises -- and not arbitrary surprises. I didn't see some of the plot twists coming, but when they occurred, they made sense, having been nicely set up.

Yes, it's true. The ferryman angle is barely explored. The fabled ferryman of Greek mythology only appears in the end. The villain -- the sailor who keeps switching bodies -- isn't the ferryman, but an ancient soul who's trying to evade the ferryman. That's not a spoiler -- it's pretty evident early on that he's not the ferryman.

THE FERRYMAN is not a horror classic.
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Format: DVD
I have to admit that The Ferryman wasn't nearly as bad a movie as I was expecting - at least it didn't suck my will to live out of my body as I watched it. Leaving aside the whole supernatural aspect of the story, though, the film does have a significant problem in terms of the silly direction Chris Graham (the director) allowed things to take in the final half hour. Letting a person steal another person's body by stabbing them to death with an ancient knife is bad enough, but having both parties flop around like fish out of water for upwards of a minute as the body transfer takes place just opens the floodgates of laughter and ridicule. There's also no way to rationalize one crucial aspect of the film's most climactic scene. All hope is not necessarily lost, though, as the writers and director redeem themselves somewhat with an ending that invites failure but ends up working quite well (and I'm not just saying that because one of the actresses suddenly becomes about ten times as attractive as she had already been up to that point).

If you've ever wondered what happened to Charon, this movie has the answer: apparently, he's been tooling around the South Pacific for a couple of thousand years trying to track down a customer who got off without paying him. That kind of stick-to-itiveness is probably what got him promoted up to head Ferryman back in the day, so let know one question this old timer's job commitment - especially when there are so many other things about this storyline to question, from the whole "body transfer knife" to the deus ex machina in little girl's clothing. We're never told anything about the knife's origins, nor do we know where Charon's unpaying customer found it.
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