22 July 2000 | Castor-5
*** out of ****
What Lies Beneath is one of those films that is very inspired by Alfred Hitchcock. This has been done recently rather well in Shallow Grave. However, it has also been done horribly in In Dreams and Eye of the Beholder (destined nominees to appear on IMDB's Bottom 100, they really are THAT bad). But What Lies Beneath is directed by Robert Zemeckis, and the man can deliver. So if the film is meant to fall in the Hitchcock genre, it can easily happen if it's in Zemeckis' hands.
I'm not going to get into the plot at all. I'd like to mention Michelle Phieffer's great performance which is definatly a very complex character that she handles greatly. Harrison Ford is as good as always and is starting to make a slow comeback after a few disappointments (Random Hearts, Six Days Seven Nights, and the good but over-rated Air Force One). The film is done with great style and has a much slower pace than what most people are used to.
My one and only complaint is the marketing for this picture. This was a good movie, but could have been great if it wasn't for the trailer. Whoever made the theatrical trailer for this film deserves to be shot. Robert Zemeckis must of looked at it and said "It's O.K." with complete sarcasm. For those of you that have seen the very overplayed theatrical trailer to the film, I'm sorry to say it but you know a whole lot more about the film than you should. If you have yet to see it, make sure if it ever comes on to cover your eyes and plug your ears. It really DOES give away that much (to prove my point - before the film started I took a guess about what would be discovered in the climax of the film and I was sad to admit I was correct).
But don't be misleaded, whether you knew as much as I did walking into the picture or not, this is a good film nonetheless. And it really does give you quite a few good jumps throughout. Many people might consider What Lies Beneath this years Sixth Sense, but I'd like to rate it as this years Stir Of Echoes - which I liked more than The Sixth Sense. Although long in length and has it's slow moments, the film does pack a punch and deserves an audience.