Director: Geoffrey Sax
Cast: Michael Keaton, Deborah Kara Unger, Mike Dopud, Ian McNeice, Chandra West, Keegan Connor Tracy
Screenplay: Niall Johnson
101 mins. Rated PG-13 for violence, disturbing images and language.
White Noise was a big deal and a major success as far as January releases go back in 2005. I had to drive a ways to find a theater playing it, and when I did, I spent almost two hours just getting pissed off at the screen. Given that it is celebrating its tenth anniversary, I wanted to take a look back on it. While my hatred towards it has lessened, the film certainly hasn’t won me over.
Jonathan Rivers (Michael Keaton, Batman, Birdman) has just lost his wife, Anna (Chandra West, I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, Burn Notice: The Fall of Sam Axe) in a freak accident. Now, he is being followed by a man named Raymond Price (Ian McNeice, Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls, Valkyrie) who claims that Anna is talking to him…through a phenomenon called EVP in which the dead speak to us through white noise transmissions in video and audio recordings.
Such a great premise wasted on turning Keaton’s character into a freaky messenger giving last wishes to people when he should be more interested in communicating with his wife and trying to solve the mystery surrounding her death. Also, are the cops at all concerned that this man is communicating with a lot of people who are in horrible accidents? Just saying.
Looking back, White Noise could have been so much better, but what few scares that actually surface in the film do little to accompany the bad screenplay and the visual flaws of its dreary and uninteresting look. Do yourself a favor and realize that you can do better elsewhere, just certainly not from the sequel.
-Kyle A. Goethe