The Others (2001 film)

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The Others
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAlejandro Amenábar
Written byAlejandro Amenábar
Produced by
Starring
CinematographyJavier Aguirresarobe
Edited byNacho Ruiz Capillas
Music byAlejandro Amenábar
Production
companies
Distributed by
Release dates
  • August 10, 2001 (2001-08-10) (United States)
  • September 7, 2001 (2001-09-07) (Spain)
Running time
104 minutes[5]
Countries
LanguageEnglish
Budget$17 million[6]
Box office$210 million[6]

The Others (Spanish: Los otros) is a 2001 gothic supernatural psychological horror film written, directed and scored by Alejandro Amenábar, starring Nicole Kidman, Fionnula Flanagan, Christopher Eccleston, Elaine Cassidy, Eric Sykes, Alakina Mann and James Bentley. Set in 1945 Jersey, it focuses on a woman and her two young photosensitive children who experience supernatural phenomena in their large manor after the arrival of new servants.

The film was theatrically released in the United States on August 10, 2001, by Dimension Films, and in Spain on September 7, 2001, by Warner Sogefilms. It was a major box-office success, grossing $210 million worldwide against a $17 million budget. It received positive reviews from critics, who praised Amenábar's direction and screenplay, as well as the atmosphere and performances of the cast (particularly Kidman). At the 16th Goya Awards, the film earned a leading fifteen nominations and won in eight categories, including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay. It was the first English-language film to be awarded Best Film at Spain's Goya Awards, without a single word of Spanish dialog.

The Others also received six nominations at the 28th Saturn Awards, winning three: Best Horror Film, Best Actress (for Kidman), and Best Supporting Actress (for Flanagan). It garnered nominations for Best Actress in a Leading Role (for Kidman) and Best Original Screenplay at the 55th British Academy Film Awards, and for Best Film at the 14th European Film Awards. Kidman was additionally nominated for Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama at the 59th Golden Globe Awards.

Plot[edit]

In 1945, Grace Stewart resides in a remote country house in Jersey, a Channel Island formerly occupied by the Germans, with her two young children, Anne and Nicholas; both of whom suffer from a severe sensitivity to light. Because of this, Grace keeps the home darkened with large curtains. One day, a housekeeper, Mrs. Bertha Mills, gardener Edmund Tuttle, and a mute girl named Lydia, arrive, all seeking employment. Grace hires them, and is pleased to learn the three worked in the same house years prior.

Anne claims to be regularly visited by a young boy named Victor, his parents, and an elderly blind woman. Grace believes this to be a fantasy but after she begins hearing footsteps and disembodied voices herself, she orders the house to be searched, believing there are intruders. In a storage room, she finds a nineteenth-century photo album containing photographs of corpses. Mrs. Mills recounts that many left in 1891 due to an outbreak of tuberculosis. Grace begins to fear that there are supernatural entities in the home, but struggles to reconcile such things with her rigid Catholic faith.

At night, Grace witnesses a piano playing itself and becomes convinced that the house is haunted. She runs outside in search of the local priest to bless the house and instructs Tuttle to check the nearby cemetery to see if a family has been buried there. Tuttle covers the gravestones with leaves at the order of Mrs. Mills. Grace runs into her husband Charles, whom she thought had been killed in the war. Charles acts very distant during his short stay at the house, presumably suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of his service in the war.

One day, Grace checks on Anne playing. To her horror, she instead finds an old woman wearing her daughter's communion dress. The old woman talks in Anne's voice. Grace attacks the old woman only to find that she has inadvertently attacked her own daughter. Charles informs Grace he must return to the front, rejecting her insistence that the war is over.

The next morning, Charles departs, and Grace is horrified to find all of the curtains in the house have been removed, exposing Anne and Nicholas to the sunlight. She accuses the servants of doing this and expels them from the house. That night, the children discover that the headstones in the cemetery belong to the trio of servants, and flee when they see the servants approaching them. Grace finds a photograph of the corpses of Mrs. Mills, Tuttle and Lydia, who all perished during the tuberculosis outbreak. Mrs. Mills tells Grace to talk to the "intruders".

Grace discovers that the elderly blind woman is in fact a medium holding a séance with Victor's parents, who have discovered via automatic writing that Grace, despondent after Charles died in the war, smothered her children to death with a pillow before committing suicide. Aghast, Grace, in a twist, realizes that "the others" in the house are the living family that moved into their house, and that like the servants, she, Anne, and Nicholas are the ghosts; the ones who are dead.

Embracing her children, Grace admits to her act of murder–suicide: she had awoken afterward and believed the event to have been a nightmare. Following the supernatural activity in the house caused by Grace and her children, Victor and his family move out. Anne and Nicholas realize they are no longer afflicted by the sunlight as they had been in life. The house goes up for sale again and Mrs. Mills informs the Stewarts that they will have to learn to cohabit with the living residents. Grace ominously states that the house is only theirs.

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Filming locations are, among other spots, Palacio de los Hornillos in Las Fraguas, Cantabria, Northern Spain, and in Madrid.[7]

Reception[edit]

Box office[edit]

The Others was first released in the United States and Canada by Dimension Films, opening on August 10, 2001 in 1,678 theaters. It grossed $14 million its opening weekend, ranking fourth at the U.S. box office behind American Pie 2, Rush Hour 2 and The Princess Diaries.[8] It stayed in fourth place for three more weeks, expanding to more theaters. During the weekend of September 21 to 23, it was second at the box office, grossing $5 million in 2,801 theaters.[9] The film, which cost $17 million to produce, eventually grossed $96.5 million in the United States and Canada. It grossed $24 million in Spain, becoming the highest-grossing Spanish film of all time, beating the record set earlier that year by Torrente 2: Misión en Marbella.[10][11] It grossed $113.4 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $210 million.[6]

Critical response[edit]

On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 84% of 172 critics' reviews are positive, with an average rating of 7.3/10. The website's consensus reads: "The Others is a spooky thriller that reminds us that a movie doesn't need expensive special effects to be creepy."[12] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 74 out of 100, based on 29 critics, indicating "generally favorable" reviews.[13]

A. O. Scott of The New York Times stated, "The Others is a flawed if interesting vehicle. The anxious indeterminacy of the first section proves hard to sustain, and as Mr. Amenábar moves away from elegant minimalism, the story begins to become cluttered and confusing, rather than spare and enigmatic." Scott highlighted Kidman's performance, writing that she "embodies this unstable amalgam with a conviction that is in itself terrifying. The icy reserve that sometimes stands in the way of her expressive gifts here becomes the foundation of her most emotionally layered performance to date."[14]

Roger Ebert gave the film two and a half stars out of four, praising that "...Alejandro Amenábar has the patience to create a languorous, dreamy atmosphere, and Nicole Kidman succeeds in convincing us that she is a normal person in a disturbing situation and not just a standard-issue horror movie hysteric". However, he noted that "in drawing out his effects, Amenábar is a little too confident that style can substitute for substance".[15]

Neil Smith of the BBC awarded the film four out of five stars, writing: "Shot in oppressive sepia amid near-darkness (Grace's children having a rare ailment that precludes exposure to sunlight), Amenábar racks up the tension to unbearable levels."[16] Time Out praised the film as "confident and controlled... Absence makes the heart beat faster: the absence of light, the corporeal absence of loved ones. Shrewdly cast, Kidman is pitch perfect. It's a clammy, ingenious film, one of the best studio movies of the year."[17]

Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times cited Kidman's performance as the film's greatest strength, writing that she "has thrown herself into her role as if it were Lady Macbeth on the London stage, with formidable results. Though Kidman doesn't hesitate to make Grace high-strung and as tightly wound as they come, she also projects vulnerability and courage when they're called for. It's an intense, involving performance, and it dominates and energizes a film that would be lost without it."[18]

Although the film deals primarily with the spiritual interaction of ghosts with each other rather than with living humans, William Skidelsky of The Observer has suggested that it was inspired by the 1898 novella The Turn of the Screw written by Henry James.[19]

Accolades[edit]

Institution Category Recipient Result Ref.
British Academy Film Awards Best Actress in a Leading Role Nicole Kidman Nominated [20]
Best Original Screenplay Alejandro Amenábar Nominated
Fangoria Chainsaw Awards Best Actress Nicole Kidman Won [21]
Best Supporting Actress Fionnula Flanagan Nominated
Best Wide-Release Film The Others Nominated
Golden Globe Awards Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama Nicole Kidman Nominated [22]
GoldSpirit Awards Best Original Score Alejandro Amenábar Nominated
Goya Awards Best Film The Others Won [23]
Best Director Alejandro Amenábar Won
Best Actress Nicole Kidman Nominated
Best New Actor James Bentley Nominated
Best New Actress Alakina Mann Nominated
Best Cinematography Javier Aguirresarobe Won
Best Editing Nacho Ruiz Capillas Won
Best Art Direction Benjamín Fernández Won
Best Production Supervision
  • Emiliano Otegui
  • Miguel Ángel González
Won
Best Original Screenplay Alejandro Amenábar Won
Best Original Score Alejandro Amenábar Nominated
Best Sound
  • Ricardo Steinberg
  • Daniel Goldstein
  • Tim Cavagin
  • Alfonso Raposo
Won
Best Costume Design Sonia Grande Nominated
Best Makeup and Hairstyles
  • Ana López-Puigcerver
  • Belén López-Puigcerver
Nominated
Best Special Effects
  • Félix Bergés
  • Derek Langley
  • Pedro Moreno
  • Rafael Solórzano
Nominated
Kansas City Film Critic Circle Awards Best Actress Nicole Kidman Won [24]
London Film Critics' Circle Actress of the Year Nicole Kidman Won [25]
Online Film Critics Best Actress Nicole Kidman Nominated [26]
Best Original Screenplay Alejandro Amenábar Won[a]
Satellite Awards Best Actress Nicole Kidman Nominated [27]
Best Supporting Actress Fionnula Flanagan Nominated
Best Original Screenplay Alejandro Amenábar Nominated
Best Film The Others Nominated
Best Sound
  • Ricardo Steinberg
  • Tim Caravign
Nominated
Best Art Direction
Nominated
Saturn Awards Best Actress Nicole Kidman Won [28]
Best Supporting Actress Fionnula Flanagan Won
Best Performance by a Younger Actor Alakina Mann Nominated [29]
Best Horror Film The Others Won [28]
Best Director Alejandro Amenábar Nominated
Best Writing Alejandro Amenábar Nominated
Venice Film Festival Golden Lion Award Alejandro Amenábar Nominated [30]
Young Artist Awards Best Supporting Young Actress Alakina Mann Nominated [31]
Best Young Actor James Bentley Won
Best Family Feature Film – Drama The Others Nominated

Home media[edit]

On 14 May 2002, Buena Vista Home Entertainment released a 2-disc collector's edition DVD.[32] On 20 September 2011, Lionsgate released the film on Blu-ray.[33] In July 2023, The Criterion Collection announced a forthcoming 4K UHD Blu-ray edition of the film scheduled for release on 24 October 2023.[34] StudioCanal concurrently announced distribution for a 4K UHD Blu-ray in Europe.[35]

Planned remake[edit]

In April 2020, Sentient Entertainment acquired the remake rights to The Others, with the company planning to revamp the film by setting it in the present day.[36] Later that year, it was announced that Universal Pictures will co-produce and distribute the film with Sentient.[37]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Shared with Mulholland Drive

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Otros, Los". Catálogo de Cinespañol. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Los Otros (2001)". British Film Institute. Retrieved December 28, 2023.
  3. ^ a b c d "The Others (2001)". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved December 28, 2023.
  4. ^ Levy, Emanuel (August 10, 2001). "The Others". Screen International. Archived from the original on September 14, 2021.
  5. ^ "The Others (12)". British Board of Film Classification. September 4, 2001. Archived from the original on December 15, 2015.
  6. ^ a b c "The Others". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Archived from the original on December 15, 2023. Retrieved February 12, 2024.
  7. ^ "The Others (2001) Filming Locations - The Movie District". The Movie District. Retrieved November 19, 2017.
  8. ^ Karger, Dave (August 15, 2001). "American Pie 2 comes out on top". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on August 13, 2023.
  9. ^ "The Others (2001) - Weekend Box Office". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved October 26, 2007.
  10. ^ Groves, Don (October 22, 2001). "Romance, laffs boos o'seas B.O.". Variety. p. 12.
  11. ^ Hopewell, John (December 24, 2001). "Homegrown pix gain in Europe". Variety. p. 7.
  12. ^ "The Others". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Archived from the original on February 7, 2024. Retrieved February 12, 2024. Edit this at Wikidata
  13. ^ "The Others". Metacritic. Fandom, Inc. Archived from the original on November 3, 2023. Retrieved February 12, 2024.
  14. ^ Scott, A. O. (August 10, 2001). "FILM REVIEW; Now, Which of You Are Dead?". The New York Times. Archived from the original on July 9, 2022. Retrieved February 12, 2024.
  15. ^ Ebert, Roger (August 10, 2001). "The Others (2001)". Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on August 13, 2023 – via RogerEbert.com.
  16. ^ Smith, Neil (October 29, 2001). "The Others – Movie Review". BBC. Archived from the original on August 14, 2023.
  17. ^ "The Others (2001), directed by Alejandro Amenábar". Time Out. February 18, 2014. Archived from the original on November 10, 2020.
  18. ^ Turan, Kenneth (August 10, 2001). "Kidman Proves Haunting". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on August 14, 2023.
  19. ^ Skidelsky, Will (May 29, 2010). "Classics corner: The Turn of the Screw". The Observer. Archived from the original on December 21, 2013.
  20. ^ "The Others". TV Guide. Archived from the original on May 16, 2023.
  21. ^ Gingold, Michael (July 2002). "The 11th Annual Fangoria Chainsaw Awards Winners!". Fangoria. No. 214. p. 11.
  22. ^ "The Others". GoldenGlobes.com. Archived from the original on June 13, 2023.
  23. ^ "Los Otros". Premios Goya (in Spanish). Archived from the original on December 4, 2020. Retrieved September 26, 2016.
  24. ^ "KCFCC Award Winners – 2000-09". kcfcc.org. December 14, 2013. Retrieved January 20, 2024.
  25. ^ "Oscar hopefuls top critics' awards". BBC News. February 13, 2002. Retrieved January 20, 2024.
  26. ^ "2001 Awards (5th Annual)". ocfcs.org. January 3, 2012. Retrieved January 20, 2024.
  27. ^ "2002 6th Annual SATELLITE™ Awards". Satellite Awards. International Press Academy. Archived from the original on January 7, 2010.
  28. ^ a b "Nominees for 28th Annual Saturn Awards". United Press International. March 14, 2002. Archived from the original on March 10, 2015.
  29. ^ "The 2001 Saturn Awards". MovieWeb. June 13, 2002. Archived from the original on September 28, 2012.
  30. ^ "La 58th Biennale Di Venezia". American Cinema Papers. Retrieved January 20, 2024.
  31. ^ "23rd Young Artist Awards". YoungArtistAwards.org. Archived from the original on April 23, 2016. Retrieved January 20, 2024.
  32. ^ Beierle, Aaron. "The Others DVD (SE)". DVD Talk. Archived from the original on August 13, 2023.
  33. ^ Harrison, William (September 15, 2011). "The Others Blu-ray". DVD Talk. Archived from the original on August 13, 2023.
  34. ^ O'Rourke, Ryan (July 18, 2023). "'The Others,' Tod Browning's 'Freaks,' and More Coming to Criterion in October". Collider. Archived from the original on August 13, 2023.
  35. ^ "STUDIOCANAL announce special 4k reissue of THE OTHERS". StudioCanal. July 31, 2023. Archived from the original on August 13, 2023.
  36. ^ Wiseman, Andreas (April 8, 2020). "Sentient Wins Remake Rights To Nicole Kidman Horror 'The Others', Alejandro Amenabar's Timely Self-Isolation Chiller Which Made $200M+". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved May 9, 2020.
  37. ^ Kroll, Justin (October 12, 2020). "'The Others' Remake In The Works As Universal Pictures & Sentient Entertainment Partner On New Movie". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 12, 2021.

External links[edit]