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Stir of echoes

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

In every mind there is a door that has never been opened.

When Stir of echoes opens, life in a working-class Chicago neighbourhood is relatively quiet and simple for Tom Witzky (Kevin Bacon), his wife Maggie (Kathryn Erbe) and their young son, Jake (Zachary David Cope). Their ordinary existence, however, takes a frightening turn when a sceptical Tom agrees to let his sister in law, Lisa (Illeana Douglas), hypnotise him during a neighbourhood party.

That session gives Tom far more than he bargained for. while under, he sees brief flashes of brutal images before awakening in a cold sweat - never to be the same. His attempts to rid himself of the visions, including a second, even more disturbing, hypnotic session, only draw him further into a supernatural mystery.

Tom's hypnotic experiences spark a subconscious awareness he can't begin to understand: a strange ability to hear and see sensations from that supernatural, other world he won't even concede exists. In the days that follow, he finds himself haunted by more nightmares and disturbing images, makes a surprising discovery about his son, and inevitably comes face to face with what appears to be a tormented, ghostly visitor.

As the visions continue, Tom's behaviour grows frightening and erratic, and he begins to distance himself from everyday life. Instead, he immerses himself totally in solving the mystery that is beginning to envelop him.

Initially unable to understand why the supernatural presence has singled him out, Tom eventually becomes convinced it is trying to tell him something. He doggedly pursues the meaning of the ghostly pleas tormenting him, and eventually makes a grisly discovery in his own home - a discovery that could destroy his marriage, his life and the entire Chicago neighbourhood where he lives.

That discovery finally leads Tom to understand that some secrets refuse to stay hidden and buried. He therefore forges ahead with a clear conviction that he must act to right a cruel wrong at all costs. As the film races to a stirring and unforgettable conclusion, he struggles to answer a faint, haunting cry for justice, one that appears to originate from beyond the grave.

Also starring Kevin Dunn as Frank McCarthy, Jennifer Morrison as Samantha, Conor O'Farrell as Harry Damon and liza Weil as Debbie Kozac. Directed by David Koepp.

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Mmm... cool.

Stir of echoes is a tight, dark, supernatural thriller that'll have you squirming on your sofa at Tom's obsession. Kevin Bacon makes the journey from working-class stiff to psychic conduit to paranormal investigator a battle against everything in which Tom believes. Acceptance and understanding is gained only after the greatest struggle. The good part is that you're never given any information that Tom doesn't know so you have to make the journey with him. There's no kicking back on the sofa watching some loser run around going psycho, you're in there, sweating, panting, covered in dirt, digging up your back yard because you can't get a girl's face out of your head.

Twisted? Oh yeah, most certainly. I haven't seen a film this twisted in a long time. It's so twisted that I didn't start to have suspicions until almost half way through (normally I figure out who's gonna die and who's gonna live and who's guilty and who's not in the first five minutes). Kevin fans will see a lot of bare chested, sweaty skin, if that sort of thing works for you. Stir of echoes is The sixth sense from a different point of view and just as good. This film is spooky and scary and you'll love it.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio commentary
  • Behind-the-scenes footage
  • 3 TV spots
  • Music video: Breathe by Moist

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Behind-the-scenes footage
  • 3 TV spots
  • Music video: Breathe by Moist

Security censorship classification

MA 15+ (Medium level violence, supernatural theme)

Surveillance time

95 minutes (1:35 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

DVD rental: 3 October 2001

Cinema surveillance images

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