They (2002)

they poster 2002 movie
2.5 Overall Score
Story: 2/10
Acting: 3/10
Visuals: 2/10

Potential with the story

No payoff, little horror

Movie Info

Movie Name: They

Studio: Dimension Films

Genre(s): Horror

Release Date(s):  November 1, 2002 (UK)/November 27, 2002 (US)

MPAA Rating: PG-13

they childhood nightmares terrors

Foolish boy…everyone knows that laying as flat as you can to the bed prevents the attack

They come in the dark.  When Julia Lund (Laura Regan) has her childhood friend Billy (Jon Abrahams) return with fears of the night terrors they both suffered as children, Julie begins to suspect that the experiences weren’t her imagination.  Meet with Billy’s friends Terry Alba (Dagmara Dominczyk) and Sam Burnside (Ethan Embry), they suspect they are being hunted…and the creatures after them seem unstoppable.

Directed by Robert Harmon, They is a psychological horror thriller.  The movie was executively produced by Wes Craven who had no actual involvement in the project and released to negative reviews.  It performed poorly at the box office.

I hadn’t seen They when it was released despite being a horror lover.  The movie just seemed like another piece of blasé horror that has a bunch of horror elements thrust into one story that doesn’t seem very inspiring.  I also always worry when a horror movie master like Wes Craven has his name attached to the project without having any involvement…that generally spells doom.

they 2002 subway laura regan monster

Wow…you almost see something here

My assessment of They was correct.  The movie is a hodgepodge of horror and with a PG-13 rating, the movie needs to be more terror based.  You are supposed to be in the shoes of Julia, but the movie doesn’t do a good job developing her character and making her anyone you care about.  She’s got a boyfriend who is surprisingly forgiving of her behavior as she spirals out of control.  One version of the movie had that the horror was all in her mind.  I actually like that idea a lot better…at least that is a bit more original than what they ended up with (and scarier).

The cast is rather dull.  With a lot of these movies with younger casts, you hope to get a young up-and-comer that happens to explode as the movie is released.  Marc Blucas had a run on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Ethan Embry has often played in teen movies, but largely the cast is forgettable.

they ending laura regan jay brazeau

Well…that was…average

If you are going to have a monster movie that relies on the horror of the monster stalking the character, the horror better be intense or you have to pay off the audience with the monster.  They does neither.  You never get a clear look at the monsters (a quick hand here or there), and this is a big problem in this style of horror movie.  The “big reveal” is an important part of a movie if the movie isn’t psychological.  They tries to get the psychological aspect and the monster aspect, but fails at both.

They feels like one of those typical PG-13 horror movies.  It lacks dimension and depth.  Other than the “they don’t like light” which is cliché, the film needs a bigger hook for horror and something more cerebral or horrifying if the creatures aren’t going to be shown.  Are they aliens?  Are they monsters?  Are they in her mind?  The bottom line with They is that you watch the film and really don’t care by the end.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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