The robots are coming, marching to the tune of control and destruction. Our termination is targeted and locked. Demons are being unleashed, dragging us down toward hell. The battle for this earth has begun, and we wait for the heroes to rise. Our thirst flows into the heart of eternity, and nightmares lurk over the jagged edges of imagination. But beyond the green, a beacon shines, and a million worlds spin, carried by the axis of talent.
In The Haunting (1999), we are introduced to Eleanor. After losing her mother, she found herself stuck between a rock and a hard place, confronted with losing her home, but then the phone rings. A chance for a new beginning, adventure opened the door to an old mansion. Under the pretense of a sleeping disorder study, mystery began to stir, seeping into a fabricated story told to incite fear, but with every piece of fiction comes an ounce of truth. But the truth would not set her free.
The chance to start over, to enjoy journey melted into a downward spiral of fear and deception. The cry of innocence pulled at Eleanor’s ear. The whispers of a forgotten past danced across the room of mirrors. The game of hide and seek had begun, and she is now the hunted. But she can’t leave. If she were to escape, he would never let them go, but was she strong enough to stop the menacing force that used this mansion as his personal hunting ground? Would the doors to his destruction lead her into the arms of salvation?
What makes The Haunting a remarkable movie, a yellow brick in Hollywood’s road is not the movie itself. The story is merely foundation. Click your ruby red slippers together, and find home in the shoes of Lili Taylor. Through the talent of this actress, we are pulled into a journey of excitement, fear, risk, and adventure, and as we tear down through the hall, breathing hard, cold wisps of air, we feel the monster gaining ground. But he is not really there. We don’t realize this for we are captivated by the strong emotions pouring forth through the actress as she dances through an array of special effects made to dazzle and scare the hell out of us. Tears pour down her cheek, and her voice raises a notch. Her terror is real, and we are the puppets to her string, to her character struggling to survive.
Movies such as The Lord of The Rings, Iron Man, Transformers, I Robot, Terminator, Constantine, Twilight, Underworld, X-Men, Star Trek, and so on would be half the movie it is today, if not for the talent. Through the actors that mold into character racing against time, hurling themselves into the face of danger, and tangoing with the unimaginable, we are left spellbound. No Computer-Generated Imaginary (CGI) could ever steal the heart of passion or the strength and dedication that makes us human. We live through them, the men and women, whose presence fills the screen. We cling to their footsteps as they step forward into journey, into a world beyond the green screen, but do we ever wonder about the true challenges that the actors face to give their characters what they need?
In SyFy’s television show, Sanctuary, we meet an extraordinary group of people dedicated to protecting the supernatural and stopping any threat that could tear our world down. Through amazing special effects, we enter a place beyond imagination. Adventure awaits at every turn, and creatures of lore and fiction rise to life, creatures both brilliant and horrifying. Suspense and Mystery lift us forward and carry us across Drama, and Science-Fiction is the soft breeze stirring through the corridor of legends. But the acting is the candlelight, and we are the moth to its flame.
As intensity builds and conflict ensues, we forget that the characters are not really burrowing deeper into a world beyond imagination but the actor is moving across the green screen. Everything that we see, all the creatures of beauty and horror flicker out of existence. The vast landscapes that could steal your breath away crawl to a halt in a room dressed in green. The actor is standing, waiting to morph into character, and challenge rests at their feet. The seeds of adventure are planted with a shout for ACTION, and journey launches through talent. And actor now character grabs us by hand, leading us into the depths of their imagination, and we follow, thirsting for more.