Whitley Strieber goes with his family and some friends to his holiday home in the forest. They experience some weird occurances, are they UFO activity? Whitley is abducted and then faces a ...
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Whitley Strieber goes with his family and some friends to his holiday home in the forest. They experience some weird occurances, are they UFO activity? Whitley is abducted and then faces a horrible dilema; was I abducted or am I going mad? He sees a psychiatrist who tries to use hypnotic regression to discover the truth.Written by
Matthew Stanfield <firstname.lastname@example.org>
On December 26th, 1985, Whitley Strieber had a dream. Weeks later, he discovered his family had the same dream. Months later, he made the most shocking discovery of his life. Now, you will discover it. See more »
The Fox TV version suffers from some poorly executed video signal enhancements; the brightness level of bright objects has been boosted and digitially diffused. This adds to the ethereal atmosphere of the "ship" and hides some of the flaws in the special effects. However, because it was applied to the entire tape, even the late afternoon sunlight streaming into Dr. Janet Duffy's (Frances Sternhagen) office appears to be the Second Coming. See more »
The film depicts the personal and professional crises a writer experiences after a series of encounters with non-human beings.
The film strongly benefits from the performances of Christopher Walken and Lindsay Crouse. Walken (always engaging) manages the challenging task of making Whitley Strieber a compelling character; you care about him even if you don't necessarily like him 100% of the time. Crouse succeeds as Whitley's wife; the two together are immediately believable as a married couple.
The film is arguably the most intelligent film about the alien abduction/ visitor phenomenon. Unlike countless cheap, made-for-TV films, where the emphasis is on the sensationalistic, "shocking" aspects of the subject, COMMUNION focuses on the psychological and emotional harm the experience does. We see Strieber describe his experiences to his medical doctor, and then to a psychiatrist. Once his own mental health has been established, then (and only then) does he begin to consider the possibility that the creatures he has seen are actually real.
After questioning everyone from medical professionals to fellow abductees, Whitley realizes the only ones with the answers are the visitors themselves. At the film's climax, he willingly presents himself to the visitors. This is what makes COMMUNION transcend every other film about the phenomenon.
Director Phillipe Mora successfully creates a "you-are-there" atmosphere, letting the actors improvise a lot of their dialogue. There are two distinct moods: one, where things are brightly lit, secure, and normal; and secondly, the dark, unsettling world Strieber inhabits only with himself and with the visitors. Mora's direction is subtle, with cues in both the dialogue and a detailed, occasionally wry visual style.
Another plus is Eric Clapton's opening and closing theme music.
This is a seriously underrated film.
The director's cut (with commentary by Mora) is recommended.
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