Welcome to my movie blog, containing reviews and articles. I've been writing since 2004 - with a short break during 2009.

Review-the shout

The Shout

Now I'm going to be honest about this - the only reason I watched this film was because it was 60p in Oxfam and rare-because-no-one-wants-it (as opposed to the films which are rare-because-everyone-wants-it) and because of a few words at the beginning. Those words were:

Original music by


Which may not mean much to you, especially as the screen-whatever was slightly out, so the letters "ANT" and "ORD" were lopped off either end of the names. But to me it means that the music was written by two members of Genesis, and that makes me incredibly excited. Favourite band. Totally great. Nice music samples streaming here.

So the first comment must surely be, was the music any good? Well, for those of you who are 'in the know', the tune used was "From the Undertow", from "A Curious Feeling", from Tony Banks' solo album. A tune I've always kinda liked but forgotten. Well let us put it this way, it is an EXCELLENT choice for the film - you will never hear it the same way again. Especially in the credit sequence, which might I add is one of the best I've seen all year - sand dunes with a distant figure tottering about, accompanied by this wailing, haunting music which and ebbs and flows and is just plain creepy, really. I tried to find you an online version, but there don't seem to be any. Here is a midi version someone's done. That'll give you the idea, but of course it's not the same...

Oh yes, and the film? well needless to say, as soon as it was over I went back and watched the credit sequence again. What, you mean the film? Oh...well I suppose I could say somethings about it...

This film is all about sound - some of the noises created by the organist while creating experimental music are supremely weird, and when seated against the music...the plot of this film is more or less the story of a man who possesses a terrible shout, "a sound that could kill someone from a distance" (well we're having a musical issue, so let's quote Kate Bush while we're at it) and what happens when he is taken in by a chuch organist and his wife.

At the same time, the story is being narrated to Tim Curry during the village vs asylum cricket match. The first thing which is said to Tim Curry's character is "Don't look up my skirt!". Admittedly the woman in question is mad, but it made me laugh seeing as I can't think of him without thinking of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Alan Bates is very good as the vaguely charming but also entirely terrifying narrator. He introduces it by saying something like "it's a true story...but sometimes I change the order of events and I change what happens at the end", which I thought was great.

Another scene which made me grin was the key change when the organist enters the church late. Felt pretty sorry for him, really. And his wife. And the dog.

The nice thing about this film was that I'd never really seen anything like it before, and I genuinely had no idea what was coming next. The production quality was a bit...odd...perhaps it was because the house where most of the action was set was run down, I'm not sure. I can't think of the word I want. There was the odd lovely camera shot in here too.

But in the end, it all comes back to sound. Music maketh movies, and in a film all about noises this is especially true. Can't say for certain if I would have noticed it if I hadn't known who wrote it. I think I would have as it was so well suited, but you never know.

And what of the Shout itself? Well, my mother ran from the other end of the house to see what was going on. Nothing can prepare you. Shivered my skin...

Rating: 3.5/5

Was it good? Yes, quite. Did I like it? Sort was a bit unsettling, really.

Based on the Titanic thing from yesterday, there's a great quiz idea. Identify all the clips which have been mashed together. Some good guesses can be seen here:

Feel free to comment any you can spot here.

Speaking of comments, I got my first comment! It really made my day, and whoever you are I want to say a big thank you for making me feel wanted and loved. Things like this do my ego no end of good...


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