Whilst I'm well aware of the Silent Hill games and their characters, I have never actually played them, so I went into this viewing it purely as a new horror film, with no other preconceptions attached to it. I was pleasantly surprised, as it turned out to be an expertly handled creepy and gory freaky story!
Radha Mitchell plays Rose De Silva, a young mother whose daughter Sharon is terminally ill. Sharon sleep walks and keeps talking about a place called Silent Hill in her dreams. With hope fading fast, Rose decides to take Sharon to Silent Hill with terrifying consequences.
What I loved about this movie was that it spends a great deal of time establishing its characters and their relationships. No ninety minute CGI shit fest here. Nope, we get over two hours of perfectly paced, tension filled story.
The casting was excellent, (although Sean Bean struggled ever so slightly with the American accent) and the filmmakers managed to build upon that regarding every aspect of the film from set design, to costumes to effects.
The moment the sirens sounded and the dark descended upon Silent Hill, you could feel the tension in the theatre. Each and every bad guy was creepy to the max, especially Pyramid Head and that moment on the church steps with Anna freaked me right out of my seat!
Special mention goes out to the extremely hot leather clad lady herself, Laurie Holden as the foxy Cybil Bennett. She was excellent here and even got to have a Sigourney Weaver meets Linda Hamilton moment. And who could forget those nurses! Never has something so hideous been so arousing.
I honestly cannot believe that Roger Ebert thought the film had no story? There is nothing worse than a critic who is so asinine towards the horror genre that he is lost for words once the genre delivers the goods. He most likely didn't expect a good story so panicked when he realized he was deep in the midst of it and hadn't been paying attention, like a silly school boy.
Silent Hill was an intelligent thriller that cleverly used ideas from the games with respect, such as the sequences where Rose memorises maps. You would never navigate your way around the Silent Hill game world without your map! From what I can gather, and in my own opinion which has limited knowledge of the game universe, Silent Hill may just be the best game-to-film adaptation ever! It's certainly not going to be outdone anytime soon.