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Signs

3.8 out of 5 stars 1,721 customer reviews

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(Jan 07, 2003)
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Vista ed.
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(Jan 01, 2002)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

From M. Night Shyamalan, the writer/director of THE SIXTH SENSE and UNBREAKABLE, comes the story of the Hess family in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, who wake up one morning to find a 500-foot crop circle in their backyard. Graham Hess (Mel Gibson) and his family are told extraterrestrials are responsible for the sign in their field. They watch, with growing dread, the news of crop circles being found all over the world. SIGNS is the emotional story of one family on one farm as they encounter the terrifying last moments of life as the world is being invaded. "It's easy for a filmmaker to blow up the world -- but what Shyamalan does is much riskier. He tries to blow our minds. I was engaged by every inch of SIGNS." - Richard Roeper, Ebert & Roeper.

Additional Features

The key component of this Vista Series DVD is a six-part documentary about the making of the film from idea to theatrical release. M. Night Shyamalan talks at length about the film and his filmmaking technique in this exclusive one-hour feature. The approach is straightforward but at times is as self-congratulatory as a marketing puff piece. Because Shyamalan works so leanly, the five deleted scenes are excellent, including a chilling scene from the film's final act. Also included are storyboard comparisons and another glimpse of one of Shyamalan's early home movies. Signs is the first of the Vista Series to be a single disc and the extras seem light, but there are only a couple of quibbles: the director again does not provide a commentary track and there is no DTS soundtrack. --Doug Thomas

Special Features

Deleted Scenes|Night's First Alien Film|M. Night Shyamalan takes you on a journey of filmmkaing in an exclusive six-part documentary exploring SIGNS from the birth of the idea, to writing the script, to building the sets, to realizing the creature and other effects, to the scoring and innovative marketing of the film.|Storyboards: Multi-Angle Feature

Product Details

  • Actors: Mel Gibson, Joaquin Phoenix, Clifford David, Lanny Flaherty, Rory Culkin
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (DTS 5.1), French (Unknown)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG-13
    Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • Studio: Touchstone Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: January 7, 2003
  • Run Time: 106 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,721 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005JL3T
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,794 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Signs" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By R. Schneblin on March 27, 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
War of the Worlds had great special effects but drove me crazy with bad character development and irritating, disrespectful kids. I can understand why they were like that, but it grated on me throughout the movie.

Signs, on the otherhand, went the opposite way. Very little special effects, but far better character development. You cared about the people so that when they were under threat, you wanted to jump into the movie and protect them. The overall theme of the movie is that there is a reason for everything--even disabilities and tragedy. This is a very difficult concept to portray and I have to hand it to writer/director Shyamalan for giving us something different than the average "scary UFO" action flick. This movie had true substance and ventured into topics and subjects that the typical Hollywood movie lacks.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Ok, I've read a few of the negative reviews that people did on this movie so I thought I'd take the time to defend it for all of you who haven't seen the film but are considering buying it.
Signs was not your typical alien invasion movie. There aren't any dazzling special effects. There's no graphic alien attack scenes. There are no images of the usual global chaos that generally accompany an alien invasion. This was no "Independence Day" type movie.
Rather than doing the usual Alien movie, Shyamalan decides to take a different approach. If you've seen The Sixth Sense and Unbreakable, you should already be familiar with his directing style. Rather than making a big movie centered around a big event, he takes things to a more personal level. He takes a character living what appears to be a typical or small life and gives them some extraordinary circumstance to deal with. Its not about everyone else when it comes to his movies. The story is never REALLY about the weird events, but rather, about the character's experiences with them.
I really think some people were disappointed in Signs because it wasn't at all what they expected. They went into the movie thinking it would be all the things I listed that it was not.
Now I'll tell you what it was and hopefully you'll take the time to watch this movie and enjoy it as much as I did.
This was a movie full of both humor and suspense. Signs is about a family and how they come together to deal with the idea that not only are we not alone in the universe, but that aliens might be preparing an invasion. Shyamalan manages to make us laugh at all the right moments as well as make us jump back with surprise. He has a real way of catching us off guard which is one of the reasons why I loved Signs.
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This is a superlative movie on many levels, and the director, M. Night Shyamalan, proves that he is a force with which to be reckoned. After his blockbuster hit, "The Sixth Sense', the viewing audience expected great things from him. When his next film, "Unbreakable", did not draw the raves that "The Sixth Sense" did, the viewing public anxiously awaited his next film to see if Shyamalan could, once again, hit it out of the ballpark. With "Signs", he confirms that he is, indeed, one of the directorial greats.
This film is about many things. It is about loss of a loved one. It is about family. It is about relationships. It is about things that we cannot control. It is about the inexplicable. It is about destiny. Yes, it is most certainly about alien invasion. It is also ultimately about one man's crisis of faith.
The film is a wonderful, scary, and amazing film. It centers around the Hess family, who has recently sustained the loss of Colleen Hess (Patricia Kalember) in a terrible accident one night. Wife to Graham (Mel Gibson), mother to Morgan (Rory Culkin) and Bo (Abigail Breslin), and sister-in-law to Merrill (Joaquin Phoenix), her death was felt on many levels. Graham, a minister in rural Bucks County, Pennsylvania, was so distraught over the senseless (or so he thinks) death of his wife, that he left his ministry and is now living a purely secular life with their children and his brother, Merrill. Graham simply cannot understand why God has seemingly forsaken him. The death of his wife has divested him of his faith, and he finds himself struggling in the world without it.
One morning, Graham discovers crop circles in the cornfield in front of his house.
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Format: DVD
It's interesting, I'd always liked this movie a lot, but watching it again after a 3 year layoff I finally see just how extraordinarily well done this is. I've watched a helluva lot of horror movies in the past 3 years, and watching this again I really see how it's on a completely different level from the vast majority of them. When it comes to creating a slow rise in tension and simply inserting the supernatural into the apparently real world 'Signs' has few peers. This relates to a small flaw, perhaps: Once we get to the climax, once we've seen all there is to see, the reality proves a little too mundane. But, the strength of the journey itself more than makes up for this slight anticlimax. This is definitely one of the very best horror movies of the new millenium.

I've heard some complain that the film lacks sight of the big picture due to its exclusive emphasis on the central family but I think that's what really makes it work, what really makes it real. After all, who cares about the big picture? We don't experience the world as a city or nation, we do it as individuals. That and it just allows us to really get to know the characters, and for Shyamalan to create full, real characters rather than just having a pack of cliches in various cities spread out across the nation. (Like you'd see in something like 'Deep Impact', for example.) Phoenix and Gibson are both absolutely great in this film, particularly Phoenix. Gibson's Graham is a little to cold and distant for us to relate to him initially, so we really connect with Phoenix's Merrill first, though I definitely came around to liking Graham as the movie went on. They're both utterly naturalistic, and manage a real severe intensity in the most emotional scenes while still avoiding any histrionics.
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