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Ryan Kwanten
Amber Valletta
Donnie Wahlberg
Bob Gunton.
James Wan.
James Wan
Leigh Whannell.
Running Time
89 minutes

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Intern, The
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3 Star Empire Rating

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Man With A Movie Camera
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Salt Of The Earth, The
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Song Of The Sea
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Look Of Silence, The
5 Star Empire Rating

Dead Silence
Dumb and dummy.

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The town of Ravens Fair has been plagued by death for generations. Luckily, the tales of ghosts and twilight-hour murder are all but forgotten for happy newlyweds Jamie and Lisa. They’ve begun a new life far away from the darkness of their hometown. That is until Lisa is gruesomely murdered and Jamie makes a reluctant return to Ravens Fair. Back with his father, Jamie learns of the legend of a murdered ventriloquist, and how the mystery of his wife’s murder could lie in the town’s bloody past.

Dead Silence
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Saw director James Wan tones it down for this mild horror about
an apparently murderous ventriloquist’s dummy.

After the puppet mysteriously arrives on Jamie’s (Ryan Kwanten) doorstep, his wife (Amber Valetta) is killed and her tongue ripped out.

Jamie returns to his home town to investigate the curse of a local ventriloquist, while under investigation by a detective Lipton (Donnie Wahlberg). But early scares give way to predictable plotting and laughably corny dialogue.

Attempts to add eccentric character touches feel equally self-conscious. Most fatally, the doll itself is only occasionally scary. Furtive eye movements when the lead isn’t looking can only be spooky for so long. 

For the love of Chucky, avoid this insipid attempt at reviving the killer doll horror.

Reviewed by Anna Smith

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Dead Silence
Empire Star Rating

One Star?? Are you serious??

!!SPOILER ALERT!! Did the reviewer actually watched the film? It's not even about a killer doll (not like Chucky or Puppett Master at least) which I loved because at the beggining you don't even know what does the killing, it makes you think like it's a doll. I consider this movie a bit scary but definitely creepy (considering that for me, scary are only good films about posessions and exorcisms). Loved old school beggining of the credits, loved the music ( ripped of the exorcist tune a b... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by dleo at 12:32, 01 July 2012 | Report This Post

as dull as a doll...

the only thing scary about this film is when you realize that it is very poor...... its extremely boring, too long to handle and not scary at all, besides one character which then turns out to be unscary near the conclusion ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by jackcarlin18 at 20:46, 22 January 2012 | Report This Post

'Goosebumps' For Adults

Creating a good horror movie is never an easy feat, and although this genre exercise falls short in several places, most notably in script. It still makes a surprisingly decent job of creating an entertaining and at least vaguely interesting horror with some nice freaky touches here and there. The script, is mentioned before, wants for quite a lot, with naff dialogue and some all-too-lazy plot devices that add to the gimmick but also make the movie seem like just another scary movie to add to th... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by blaud at 15:03, 03 May 2011 | Report This Post

I thought it was AWESOME!

I watched this film alone in my room with all the lights off and it scared the HELL out of me!! It was AWESOME!! I love any film that scares me and after watching it I was too scared to get out of bed from watching it on my computer screen. DEFINATE MUST WATCH!! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by lilzz at 14:50, 27 March 2010 | Report This Post

RE: A bit of a shame to be honest.

Maybe 1 star was harsh, wldnt give it more than 2 though, it just wasn't scary at all, and there was no gore either. Surely a horror must deliver on one of those to be any good.  ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Clarence Worley at 17:37, 07 September 2008 | Report This Post

A bit of a shame to be honest.

A great story deserves good filmmakers which this did not get. They tried to make it a bit too Gothic with the set design and either the fog machine malfuctioned or they actually thought it was a good idea to have that much. Overall a great idea with mediocre excecution. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by smartarse at 13:50, 24 July 2008 | Report This Post

A bit of a shame to be honest.

A great story deserves good filmmakers which this did not get. They tried to make it a bit too Gothic with the set design and either the fog machine malfuctioned or they actually thought it was a good idea to have that much. Overall a great idea with mediocre excecution. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by smartarse at 13:50, 24 July 2008 | Report This Post

One star? WTF?

Are you f***ing kidding me? One star?! I thought this was a very creepy no-nonsense horror and the twist at the end was right up there with the best of them. Much better than most other US horrors so of course nobody has heard of it which is a crying shame. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Caster at 12:54, 15 July 2008 | Report This Post

1 star is incredibly harsh considering The Happening got 2 stars.... This has much better effects, a much better script (even though it's still clunky), and unlike The Happening is at least spooky in parts. Very unfair review. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by UTB at 14:34, 27 June 2008 | Report This Post


Quite possibly, the worst fucking movie ever....ok Battlefield Earth is the worst, but this comes a close 2nd. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by tallaght24 at 13:38, 04 March 2008 | Report This Post

Empire got it wrong....

Through my own opinion and clearly through the opininons of other readers its clear that this film is worth a bit more than 1 star. Its no classic but i thought it had quit alot going for it. If only the stroy was a bit stronger and the acting was a bit more human-like then this would be a genuinely creepy film. Its clunky in places but all together easy to watch for what it is. Dont avoid at all costs , its not that bad. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by JimBo! at 11:32, 01 November 2007 | Report This Post

Wrong, wrong, wrong!

I don't normally question Empire reviews, but 1 star???? WTF? Have you actually watched the movie? Was this film reviewed by a horror fan? What was Kim Newmans take on it? The doll certainly isn't the only creepy thing in this film! As I said before, it's no classic but it's superior in every way to the current crop of horror flicks out there. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by skeletonjack at 08:49, 25 July 2007 | Report This Post

RE: Dead Silence

Goddamn fucking A, Empire! 95 out of a hundred times I agree with your reviews and ratings, which is why I gladly accept the other 5 times as difference in taste. Usually you have good points to bring forward for films that you deem worse than I do and that's alright. But giving this quite enjoyable movie 1 star when godawful Bollwork House of the Dead gets 2 is a downright plain fucking insult to every mammal's intellect above foetus stage on this planat. Shame on you, Empire! ... More

Posted by Okami at 07:29, 25 July 2007 | Report This Post

RE: Dead silence indeed

I'd wanted to see this since seeing the trailer a while ago, but due to the ridiculous limited release it wasn't showing in the north east of England so I had to import it on DVD from the States. I found this to be a very entertaining, old fashioned ghost story. Its atmospheric and very creepy the way traditional ghost stories should be. It's not a classic, but beats the hell out of the current torture based horror movies out there. Give this a chance you may well be pleasantly surprised... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by skeletonjack at 23:34, 18 July 2007 | Report This Post

RE: Dead silence indeed

what star rating did Empire give it? ... More

Posted by dr. salvador at 16:18, 16 July 2007 | Report This Post

Dead silence indeed

I have watched dead silence, but i was not impressed. It gets boring with all your usual movies cliches. I dont think that puppets that kill people will hold out to the audience and it will not make alot at the box office. It is an ok watch but not great, so to find out you will have to go and see it, will you agree with me or not? ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by ladytamz07 at 18:07, 15 July 2007 | Report This Post

Enjoyable film, worth seeing! Those dolls are helluva freaky, lol. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by FortWilliamLoyal at 19:55, 09 July 2007 | Report This Post

RE: Dead Silence

a preview screening of this and was pleasantly surprised at how good it was. The ventriloquist doll is just plain creepy ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Starscream at 18:53, 09 July 2007 | Report This Post

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