The Gift

( 9 )

Overview

Sam Raimi's The Gift is a twist-filled thriller and a very nice DVD. The picture, which is 1.85:1 and anamorphic, conveys the foreboding atmosphere perfectly with strong blacks (a major portion of the film) and nicely realized, yet often muted, colors. Flesh tones are right-on also, which contrasts well with the other, darker, photographic elements. The sound, a 5.1 Dolby Digital English track, is primarily focused up front, but a few instances of surround material heighten the soundtrack, creating an unsettling ...
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Overview

Sam Raimi's The Gift is a twist-filled thriller and a very nice DVD. The picture, which is 1.85:1 and anamorphic, conveys the foreboding atmosphere perfectly with strong blacks (a major portion of the film) and nicely realized, yet often muted, colors. Flesh tones are right-on also, which contrasts well with the other, darker, photographic elements. The sound, a 5.1 Dolby Digital English track, is primarily focused up front, but a few instances of surround material heighten the soundtrack, creating an unsettling effect at the right time. Also included are surround tracks in English and French, plus subtitles in English. As for extras, there are a few, but they aren't spectacular. Beyond the theatrical trailer is a featurette that runs just more than ten minutes. This short piece includes interviews with a number of cast members and the director who briefly describe working together and their experiences making the film. It's a nice addition, but doesn't amount to much more than a fluff piece. Also included is an odd song, "Furnace Room Lullaby," from Neko Case & Her Boyfriends.
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Special Features

Widescreen enhanced for 16x9 TVs; cast and crew interviews; music video for "Furnace Room Lullaby," performed by Neko Cast & Her Boyfriends; theatrical trailer; Dolby Digital Surround 5.1 audio; English subtitles; English and French language tracks.
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Donald Gray
Director Sam Raimi delivers a long-awaited gift to fans of his earlier genre triumphs The Evil Dead, Army of Darkness with this elegantly simple return to the voodoo of horror pictures past. Cate Blanchett Elizabeth stars as Annie Wilson, a widowed mother of three young boys who supports her family by giving psychic readings to her neighbors. When asked to help locate the missing daughter of a wealthy local socialite, Annie finds herself fixed between the horror of her own troubling visions and the real-life dangers posed by those who fear what her "gift" might unearth. Raimi and screenwriter Billy Bob Thornton A Simple Plan, Slingblade have spun this modest Southern gothic out of the dust and bones of standard murder mysteries, small-town melodramas, and classic ghost tales. While its lack of surprises may disappoint some, the film's old-fashioned sincerity, with its focus on mood and character, is refreshing in a time when the genre seems burdened by an excess of irony, attitude, and gimmickry. The solid supporting cast includes a bearded Keanu Reeves in a surprising turn as the local redneck wife beater; Oscar winner Hilary Swank, trapped beneath a horribly unflattering poodle cut, as his long-suffering spouse; Giovanni Ribisi, who gives an earnest turn as the town's borderline psychotic; Greg Kinnear and the perpetually underrated Gary Cole doing their usual fine work; and Katie Holmes playing against type as the occasionally topless vamp at the heart of the mystery. Still, if one element stands above the rest, it's Cate Blanchett's absolutely luminous central performance as the strong but vulnerable Annie. She brings an engaging simplicity and truthfulness to every moment that she's onscreen, making The Gift, despite its limitations, an unqualified success.
Village Voice - J. Hoberman
Nasty as pond scum, The Gift is a creepily effective button pusher that owes a bit to the original Cape Fear both in Sam Raimi's ruthless direction, reprising a few tricks from his Evil Dead, and Keanu Reeves's unexpectedly robust performance.
Chicago Sun-Times - Roger Ebert
The movie is ingenious in its plotting, colorful in its characters, taut in its direction and fortunate in possessing Cate Blanchett...isn't she once again an independent woman surrounded by men who want to belittle her power, seduce her, frame her or kill her? A woman who has to rely on herself and her gifts, and does, and is sufficient.

The movie is ingenious in its plotting, colorful in its characters, taut in its direction and fortunate in possessing Cate Blanchett...isn't she once again an independent woman surrounded by men who want to belittle her power, seduce her, frame her or kill her? A woman who has to rely on herself and her gifts, and does, and is sufficient.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/17/2001
  • UPC: 097363289548
  • Original Release: 2000
  • Rating:

  • Source: Paramount
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Surround, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • Language: English, Fran├žais
  • Time: 1:51:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Cate Blanchett Annie Wilson
Giovanni Ribisi Buddy Cole
Keanu Reeves Donnie Barksdale
Katie Holmes Jessica King
Greg Kinnear Wayne Collins
Hilary Swank Valerie Barksdale
Michael Jeter Gerald Weems
Kim Dickens Linda
Gary Cole David Duncan
Rosemary Harris Annie's Granny
Chelcie Ross Kenneth King
John Beasley Albert Hawkins
J.K. Simmons Sheriff Johnson
Technical Credits
Sam Raimi Director
Deborah Aquila Casting
Arthur Coburn Editor
Grant Curtis Associate Producer
Sean Daniel Executive Producer
Tom Epperson Screenwriter
Gregory Goodman Executive Producer
Eric Heffron Asst. Director
James Jacks Producer
Jamie Anderson Cinematographer
Gary Lucchesi Producer
Bob Murawski Editor
Ed Novick Sound/Sound Designer
Marthe Pineau Set Decoration/Design
Tom Rosenberg Producer
Neil Spisak Production Designer
Ted Tannenbaum Executive Producer
Robert Tapert Executive Producer
Billy Bob Thornton Screenwriter
Julie Weiss Costumes/Costume Designer
Richard S. Wright Co-producer
Christopher Young Score Composer
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Scene Index

Side #1
0. Scene Selections
1. Opening Credits [:34]
2. Reading Cornelius' Cards [2:46]
3. At Home With The Kids [:28]
4. Annie Can't Sleep [:40]
5. Reading For Valerie [:54]
6. A Conference With Wayne [:50]
7. Annie Meets Jessica [1:34]
8. Annie Goes To Buddy's Shop [1:39]
9. Buddy At The Wheel [1:23]
10. Checking On The Kids [1:23]
11. Donnie Barksdale Comes To Call [2:45]
12. Valerie Interrupts A Reading [:48]
13. A Visit From Granny [2:02]
14. At The Country Club [1:01]
15. Catching Jessica In The Act [1:57]
16. A Moonlight Talk With Wayne [1:37]
17. An Intruder In The House [:26]
18. A Reading For Buddy [2:38]
19. A Disturbing Phone Call [:28]
20. "How come we never go to the cemetery?" [3:07]
21. Annie Has A Nightmare [:53]
22. News About Jessica [2:20]
23. Buddy Vs. Donnie [2:42]
24. Mr.King Comes For A Reading [:35]
25. Annie's Dream [1:01]
26. A Vision In The Backyard [:56]
27. Annie Talks To Sheriff Pearl [1:43]
28. Dredging Donnie's Pond [2:16]
29. Annie Talks To The D.A. [3:08]
30. The Trial Begins [1:33]
31. Buddy Outside Of The Courthouse [2:22]
32. "I know you skipped school." [:49]
33. The Blue Diamond Revealed [1:34]
34. The Trial Concludes [:39]
35. Valerie Wants Another Reading [3:30]
36. A Nightmarish Visit From Jessica [2:16]
37. Annie Goes To Wayne's House [1:20]
38. A Vision Of Blood [1:19]
39. A Nighttime Visit With The D.A. [1:26]
40. Buddy In The Rain [:45]
41. Annie Reads For Wayne [2:47]
42. Return To The Swamp [:33]
43. Talking To Buddy In The Car [7:06]
44. Annie And Buddy Go To The Sheriff's Station [2:57]
45. Sheriff's Pearl's Revelation [2:50]
46. Visiting The Cemetery [1:13]
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Menu

Side #1
   Play
   Set-Up
   Special Features
      Theatrical Trailer
      The Gift: A Look Inside
      "Furnace Room Lullaby" Music Video By Neko Case And Her Boyfriends
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(6)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    terrifyingly wonderful!

    I'm not a horror/thriller fan, but this was an excellent movie to me. Cate Blanchett does her usual perfect job in playing Annie, and I was on the edge of my seat most of the movie. I loved how the pyschic Annie was portrayed, 'cause I knew someone who was 'gifted', and from what I can tell, the movie was pretty accurate. And the musical score! just heavenly!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Brilliant....and Surprising

    One can usually expect nothing less than excellent in the way of performance from Cate Blanchett, Hillary Swank and Mr. Ribisi, which they CERTAINLY delivered. Additionally, Keanu Reeves should have had a nod from the Academy for this one. His performance is extremely truthful. Real. A riveting story; well written and well directed. Must See!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    EXCELLENT!!!!!!!!

    I absoulutely LOVE this movie!!! Cate Blanchett was stunning! This movie is a MUST SEE!!!!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Topless Scene not Necessary

    Great movie....watched it last night. While I am a large Katie Holmes fan from watching Dawson's Creek, I was disapointed with the topless scene at the end. The whole scene was unnecessary to the plot of the movie. It seems that more and more young female actresses find it necessary to ''loosen'' their dignity by attempting to shed the child star image by doing nudity in their first big movie roles. Nice bod, but come on, have some respect for yourself girls!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    BRAVO!!!! BRAVO!!!

    This was a wonderful movie, kept you on the edge of your seat!!! Great acting in this film, with Cate Blanchett. Highly recommend!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 10, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews