Gift, The

Psychic Vibes!

Main Cast: Cate Blanchett, Giovanni Ribisi, Hilary Swank, Keanu Reeves

Director: Sam Raimi

A good thriller disguised as a drama, this movie uses psychic powers not as a major power, but a tool for our heroine to piece together clues and otherwise advance the plot to its shocking but logical conclusion.

Cate Blanchett expertly plays Annie Wilson, a young widow who pays the bills with her psychic readings, some of which are not welcome to a number of people, including Donnie Barksdale (Keanu Reeves) who is abusing his wife, Valerie (Hilary Swank). Annie tries to convince Valerie to leave this troubled marriage, but Donnie comes around to warn the psychic off (Reeves is powerful and menacing in this role). And the director, Sam Raimi, is expert in creating a slow dread, which creeps upon the picturesque town like a chilling fog. The disappearance (and perhaps murder) of the wild young Jessica King (Katie Holmes) propels Annie into the investigation that solves more than just one mystery.

I liked this drama. It slowly develops its characters, and the sense of dread and something bad about to happen is very strong. The shocks are jolting but make logical sense, even through the psychic visions and other supernatural touches.

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