1408

Missed Opportunity

Content -3
Quality
None Light Moderate Heavy
Language        
Violence        
Sex        
Nudity        

Release Date: June 22, 2007

Starring: John Cusack, Samuel L.
Jackson, Mary McCormack, and
Tony Shalhoub

Genre: Horror

Audience: Older teenagers and adults

Rating: PG-13

Runtime: Approximately 99 minutes

Distributor: Dimension Films/The Weinstein
Company and MGM

Director: Mikael Håfström

Executive Producer: Harvey Weinstein, Bob
Weinstein, Jake Myers, and
Richard Saperstein

Producer: Lorenzo di Bonaventura

Writer: Matt Greenberg, Scott
Alexander and Larry
Karaszewski

Address Comments To:

Bob Weinstein and Harvey Weinstein
Co-Chairmen
Dimension Films
The Weinstein Company
345 Hudson Street, 13th Floor
New York, NY 10014
Phone: (646) 862-3400
Fax: (917) 368-7000
Website: www.weinsteinco.com

Content:

(OO, H, Ab, B, LLL, VVV, NN, A, D, M) Strong, slightly mitigated occult worldview that ultimately says ghosts of dead people can exist and communicate with the living in rare cases (which seems to give skeptical hero some hope that his dead daughter is in some kind of happy afterlife), plus skeptical protagonist doubts the existence of God and also asks, “What kind of God would do that to a little girl” when speaking about his daughter who died of some kind of disease but later appeals to God a couple times and clearly loves his daughter and wife, though grief over daughter’s death has resulted in a separation with his wife; 23 obscenities, seven strong profanities and eight light profanities; some gruesome bloody photos of murder and suicide victims, man attacked by assailant with a knife, window shuts on man’s hand and cuts it, man almost falls off ledge, character attacks man in vent, flood of water sweeps over man, room set on fire, man watches as ghost of suicide victim jumps out window, and man holds his dead daughter in burned-out room and she turns to charcoal; no sex; upper female nudity in painting; alcohol use; smoking; and, man lies in books to make people believe in haunted places and earn a living.

Summary:

1408 is a horror movie based on Stephen King’s short story about a skeptical, grieving writer of ghost stories who finally finds a haunted place that threatens his life and his sanity. 1408 has an interesting storyline but eventually becomes unbelievable and contains many obscenities and profanities, some gruesome violent images and an occult worldview with an open-ended theology, slightly mitigated by a couple positive appeals to God for help and the hero’s concern for his daughter.

Review:

John Cusack stars in 1408, a horror movie based on Stephen King’s short story. Cusack plays Mike Enslin, a horror writer who writes phony books about haunted places. His young daughter’s death has left Mike cynical and skeptical about the supernatural, even the existence of God, yet his books about haunted places read as if he believes in the paranormal and supernatural.

When he hears about mysterious deaths taking place in Room 1408 of the Dolphin Hotel in New York City, Mike tries to rent the room for one night. The hotel’s dapper manager, played by Samuel L. Jackson, tries everything to discourage Mike from staying in the room, but Mike stubbornly refuses.

Of course, unlike all the other haunted places he’s been in, Room 1408 turns out to be the real deal. In fact, the room locks Mike in and seems determined to kill him. Perhaps Mike won’t survive the night after all.

Modern supernatural thrillers have a tendency to overdo the effects until they become unbelievable. Such is the case with 1408, which has an interesting, somewhat involving storyline. The movie also never resolves Mike doubts about the existence of God. Although Mike’s atheism dissolves at one point when he pleas to God for help, in the end, only timing and Mike’s clever abilities are able to give Mike a chance to survive. Finally, the movie ultimately says that ghosts of dead people can exist and communicate with the living. This seems to give Mike hope that his daughter is in some kind of happy afterlife after all, but it doesn’t answer the God question. Thus, the movie has an occult worldview and ultimately fails to face the question of God’s existence. Why bring up Mike’s doubts about God if you’re not going to answer them more explicitly? That said, Mike’s pleas to God at one point and his concern for his daughter slightly mitigate the movie’s occult worldview.

1408 also contains more than 35 obscenities and profanities, some gruesome photos and flashbacks of dead murder and suicide victims, and a painting with upper female nudity.

In Brief:

1408 is a horror movie based on Stephen King’s short story. John Cusack plays Mike Enslin, a horror writer who writes phony books about haunted places. His young daughter’s death has left Mike skeptical about the supernatural, even God’s existence. When he hears about mysterious deaths taking place in Room 1408 of the Dolphin Hotel in New York City, Mike tries to rent the room for one night. The hotel’s dapper manager, played by Samuel L. Jackson, tries to discourage Mike, but Mike stubbornly refuses. Of course, unlike all the other haunted places he’s encountered, Room 1408 turns out to be the real deal. In fact, the room locks Mike in and seems determined to kill him. Perhaps Mike won’t survive the night after all.

Modern supernatural thrillers have a tendency to become unbelievable. Such is the case with 1408. The movie also never answers Mike’s doubts about God, although at one point, like the soldier in the foxhole, Mike appeals to God directly. Thus, 1408 has a strong slightly mitigated occult worldview with an open-ended theology, as well as many obscenities and profanities, and some gruesome violent images.