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HEREAFTER

A 2010 movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

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Supernatural drama/romance, the posibility of the afterlife, and strong directorial work.

  • May 1, 2011
Rating:
+3
*** out of ****

"Hereafter" is being marketed as some sort of "Sixth Sense"-esque paranormal drama, although I assure you, it is far from one of those. It's a different venue for director Clint Eastwood, who is talented and skillful, and has made a film that matches the quality of the mass majority of his productions. This isn't a masterpiece, and it's not the best Eastwood directorial feature, but "Hereafter" is worth seeing in its own little ways, for its own little reasons.

This film is not about ghosts, although the previews and various synopsis' compel us to think otherwise. I personally believe that this film is about the afterlife itself, the possibility of such a thing, and the beliefs of individuals. The film feels realistic in how people view life after death, and I could imagine such a story playing out like this in reality. One moment, melodramatic; and another moment, smart. This movie will divide audiences and their opinions. Some have been calling it Clint Eastwood's worst films since...I dunno. They say it is pretentious and messy. I say it's whimsical and kind of beautiful; but on a light note.

The film stars Matt Damon as a psychic who wants to give up on his job, and possibly his life. He no longer wants to do "readings" for people, although he tends to make exceptions from time-to-time. Each "reading" is a new sequence; well-done on Eastwood's part, but never as memorable as they were intended to be. The story itself focuses on the perception of the afterlife, from the viewpoints of three people; a woman who survived a tsunami, a little boy who has lost his brother to a car collision, and the psychic himself. We know how the story is going to end, but the fun is how (and where) Eastwood intends on taking us along the way.

I'm not the only one who thinks that "Hereafter" has flaws. My biggest bite, when it comes to this movie, is the ending; which came off to me as just plain disappointing. Sure, the film could have ended worse, but it could have ended better as well. Another thing: Matt Damon's character starts a romantic interest with a woman played by Bryce Dallas Howard. This relationship isn't depicted with much depth, and when the somewhat-forbidden-love-story ends, it just ends, and without the right amount of payoff.

Now, on to the juicy (good) stuff. Watching "Hereafter" felt good. The film is always mellow, even at some of its most intense scenes, and has some solid emotional drama. Eastwood's score is calm and soothing, setting the mood for his spiritual, somewhat religious fable. I won't go in depth with all that, because I don't want to upset anyone, and a part of me does not care at the moment, but those who can appreciate religious messages in the form of filmmaking-storytelling may want to check this movie out. Aside from that, the movie has good cinematography, and Eastwood's direction makes sure that the experience is quite rich. The performances are good, drama is kind of a "50/50" thing, since it often times stumbles and often times succeeds when it comes to what it is doing. However, there's enough spectacle, entertainment, and beauty to "Hereafter" for me to recommend it, warts and all. And believe me, "Hereafter" has its share of warts, but if you are a rather forgiving viewer, then you may see something here that few others can.

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May 01, 2011
"share of warts" LOL!! nice line!!
 
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More Hereafter (2010 movie) reviews
review by . October 21, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
3 ½ Stars: A Supernatural Drama About The Living And The Dead
I’ve always proclaimed that I have a fondness for movies directed by Clint Eastwood and I believe I've seen every movie directed by him. I like the way he develops his story and how he keeps a sense of simplicity when he frames his shots. Eastwood always goes for the first draft of any story; he went for the purity of Paul Higgins’ first story draft in “Million Dollar Baby” and I’ve read the same about the script of “Gran Torino” among his other …
review by . October 23, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Screenwriter Blake Snyder talks about delivering on the "promise of the premise" in the story concept, and delivering the "fun and games" associated with a winning idea. A movie like Home Alone - about the kid left to defend his house from burglars while the family's away - is a great example of this. Hereafter is supposedly about the only genuine psychic in the world - wow, what a great concept - but it never fully capitalizes on the idea.      The other …
review by . December 27, 2011
  There are essentially three very moving tales in this excellent film. Viewers hoping to learn about what happens to people after death, whether there is something or nothing, will be disappointed, because this is not the film's purpose. The hereafter is a backdrop to the three tales that Clint Eastwood directs and Matt Damon acts in very well.     One story is about the character played by Damon. He discovers that he has the ability to see and hear a dead relative …
review by . March 02, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
What is after death? Wrong question!
Hereafter is a movie I saw right after Sunset Limited. Both deal with death and human’s survival in the world. Hereafter is a movie that attempts to answer the question about life after death although its focus is on those who survived and their attachment to close people who had passed on.         Matt Damon is the psychic who gets his vibes from people through the sense of touch. He “hears” what the dead had to say to those who are seeking them. …
review by . October 26, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Let's see this is my first review, so here goes.       Clint Eastwood -- high expectations, I think too high.   The opening scenes were heart pounding.  Man versus nature, no contest.  Visually I found the moving appealing.  But there  was a calmness/flatness that settled in after the Tsunami scene like the roller coaster ride was over, and it was.  I found myself getting exasperated with the plodding movement of the story.  Started …
review by . October 30, 2010
HEREAFTER is an engrossing but frustrating film. My interest was held throughout, yet when it was all over, I was extremely disappointed in how little my interest added up to.    Directed by Clint Eastwood, HEREAFTER would appear to be exploring the old question "what happens to us after we die," but really it is a character study of a couple of folks who have very atypical experiences with death. Ultimately, it isn't terribly meaningful because it is NOT universal.    The …
review by . October 20, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Many of us have a terrible tendency to pigeonhole filmmakers into the genres we think they're best suited for. When I first saw the trailer for "Hereafter," I, like much of the moviegoing public, was unpleasantly surprised at the thought of Clint Eastwood having directed a supernatural drama. Given his recent triumphs with films like "Mystic River," "Million Dollar Baby," "Changeling," "Gran Torino," and "Invictus," it just didn't …
review by . October 23, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Clint's Near Death Experiment
HEREAFTER   Written by Peter Morgan   Directed by Clint Eastwood   Starring Matt Damon, Cecile de France, Bryce Dallas Howard and George McLaren       Billy: A life that is all about death is no life at all.       It’s no secret that Clint Eastwood is getting up there in years.  He has been churning out films on an almost yearly basis in the last decade as if he is trying to cram as much work as possible into …
Quick Tip by . April 13, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
While I liked the story and the themes being dealt with in Hereafter, I couldn't help but feel somewhat disappointed with the screenplay which feels somewhat exploitative in the way it utilizes contemporary events such as the London subway terrorist bombings and the 2004 tsunami as well as the concept of mediums. I couldn't help but feel that I was watching a film that much like the spiritualist revival movement after WWI wanted to instill its viewers with hope and a belief in the afterlife, …
Quick Tip by . November 19, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
I did like this movie, not because it was such an amazing story but it was more the visual experience and the way the different story lines all connected at the end. It will not change your mind about your beliefs of the afterlife or lack of it, but was enjoyable and thought provoking.
About the reviewer
Ryan J. Marshall ()
Ranked #11
It's very likely that the only kind of reviews I'll ever post here are movie reviews. I'm very passionate about film; and at this point, it pretty much controls my life. Film gives us a purpose; … more
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About this movie

Wiki

  • Opened October 15, 2010 (Limited NY-LA-Toronto 10/15; Opens Wide 10/22) | Runtime:2 hr. 6 min.
  • PG-13
    Mature thematic elements including disturbing disaster and accident images, and for brief strong language
  • An American laborer (Matt Damon), a French journalist (Cécile de France) and a London schoolboy set out on a spiritual journey after death touches their lives in different ways.
  • Cast: Matt Damon, Cécile De France, Daniel McLaren, Jay Mohr, Bryce Dallas Howard
  • Director: Clint Eastwood
  • Genres: DramaSupernatural Drama
  • Poster art for "Hereafter"
  • view wiki

    Details

    Director: Clint Eastwood
    Genre: Drama
    Release Date: October 20, 2010 limited
    MPAA Rating: PG-13
    Screen Writer: Peter Morgan
    Runtime: 129 minutes
    Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
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