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What Lies Beneath

Director:Robert Zemeckis
Writer:Clark Gregg
DreamWorks; PG-13; 130 minutes
Release:6/00
Cast:Michelle Pfeiffer, Harrison Ford, Diana Scarwide

The baby boomer cool down epitomized by films such as The Big Chill and Ice Storm are resuscitated in What Lies Beneath with a frosty supernatural edge. Michelle Pfeiffer plays Claire Spencer, a nervous mother with the nagging suspicion that her house is haunted. Harrison Ford, himself nearly a spectral presence, is Claire's workaholic husband with a bad past. Director Robert Zemeckis was also in charge of Forrest Gump and executive producer of HBO series Tales from the Crypt. Zemeckis dispatches his fine actors into shallow drama and shallow scares, vibrating brightly between the sensibilities of Crypt and Gump.

Something about ghost stories calls for a few ragged edges here and there, places where mystery can heighten the horror and ambivalent characters build suspense. While mildly entertaining, What Lies Beneath is a too well-sealed, and doesn't merit its two-hour length.


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