Premonition

Last night, my wife and I went to see Premonition, the new Sandra Bullock movie. The description reads, “A housewife is shocked when her husband dies in a car crash and reappears the next day. She realizes it was a premonition and tries to avoid the tragedy.”

When I think about movies that closely resemble ours, my list includes movies like Butterfly Effect, Memento, and now Premonition. Interestingly, there are many parallels to this movie and our movie.

But, after reading how the critics slammed the movie, I was a bit concerned for our project, because of the similarities. But, after seeing the movie last night, I saw considerable differences; ones that I believe will distinguish the two movies.

*** WARNING ***
*** The following contains spoilers for Premonition and our  movie. ***
First, the ending of Premonition was a major downer. My wife hated it. As did I. And, after reading the user reviews from IMDB, it seems that most everyone hated the ending as well. (I wonder if they are positioning the DVD sales for an “alternate ending”.)

When I first read the script for our project, the ending was very similar, a bit of a downer. It was the kind of ending where you hope he can make a difference, but doesn’t. Same with Premonition. She has the chance to change something but can’t. It was very down. Very fatalistic.

Our writer and I spent a few months finding the ending that I wanted, and we did. Kudos to Nick, the writer! He landed the perfect ending, one where our hero saves the day, and you leave the story/movie feeling good. One crew member read it and told me, “I had goose bumps at the end.”

Yeah! Goose Bumps!

Another story flaw I found in Premonition was that the audience was never challenged to figure anything out. They were spoon fed the entire movie, starting with the trailer. Once you watch it, you know the whole story. There’s nothing to figure out.

Our Project is considerably different. From the start, you don’t realize what’s going on. It’s not till page 50 that you realize what’s happening, and even then, you’re not sure you know what’s happening. You’re still challenged as the viewer to figure it out.

Finally, the other flaw I saw in Premonition was that they relied on all the horror tricks: jump moments, fright music, bugs, etc. It was too predictable, too obvious. As I start working on our edit, I need to make sure we don’t rely on the those cliché moments.

I thought Sandra Bullock’s performance was strong. I think she’s a good actress. To swing from comedy to drama and do it well takes talent.

If you get a chance, go see Premonition, and post your comments. I would enjoy hearing from you.


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14 Responses to “Premonition”

  1. Andrew Gash Says:

    I just got home from seeing Premonition and I have to say that I just witnessed one of the biggest mistakes I have ever seen. Notice I said “mistakes”, however, not “catastrophes”. The movie itself, or at least, the first 9/10s of it, was quite enjoyable for me. Although things were “spoon fed” when I think about it, I still enjoy seeing the pieces of the puzzle come together, even though the box with the completed picture on it sits beside me (forgive the metaphor and cliché all rolled into one). However, the ending, in which Bullock’s character doesn’t rescue her husband, or at least if she does, that’s up to the viewer to believe, leaves everything to be desired. Unless I’m told that the husband is alive or am shown some strong evidence that leads me to believe that his body isn’t a pile of ash, I’m going to take it that he’s dead. Surprisingly enough, however, not even that junky of an ending would suffice. Instead, they chose to work another “miracle-gone-crazy” into the film via an impregnating-flashback-leap-of-faith. The ending went from bad to nuts. The only thing they didn’t try to explain in the movie is the one thing that made the least sense. If you’ve seen Premonition, you understand what I’m talking about. Make the ending a good one! I’m pretty sure that unless one is seeing a “true story” sort of the movie, no one cares if the movie turns out “right”, as long as it turns out happy.

    As far as the movie quality is concerned, I thought that the acting for all characters except Sandra Bullock’s was great for a few moments but mediocre for most of the picture. There was hardly any depth to any of the characters. Bullock’s was the most intriguing, but even then, I felt more sorrow about the fact that her husband dies at the end because of her acting, not because of the character she was portraying. Sandra Bullock brought a lot to the role. In fact, the whole movie pretty much rested on her name and the promise of a suspenseful ride. One of those pillars collapsed miserably, and not even Ms. Bullock can rescue that.

    I’ve read some other user opinions about this film online, and I’ve seen many people say that they are waiting for the DVD and hoping for an alternate ending. For me, the ending of the movie is the ending of the movie. There isn’t a finale -à la carte, pick-and-choose option when you go to the theater. The ending shown is the ending that was the director wanted to their film. If there is an alternative, happy conclusion, then the director chose poorly indeed.

    If you haven’t seen Premonition yet, and you’re the type of person who sees a film to enjoy yourself, then this film is not the one for you. Then again, if you’re someone who likes to analyze a picture no matter how wonderful or horrible it might be, then this creation will be worth your while. Like I said, I liked most of it, but the ending ruined the entire picture.

  2. Kay Salem Says:

    I liked the ending of Premonition, I liked Premonition. I looked at this film from a TOTALLY Spiritual side. The husband was going to die, NO MATTER WHAT. God has a time for us all. What matters is how we that are left behind deal with the relationship that has ended. Sandra Bullock’s character could have been hardened after her husbands death with all the stuff coming to light. She was at one point when she told her friend on the porch that she and her husband were roommates and that her roommate turned out to be a liar. However God gave her a chance to glimps at the future and either insert love or bitterness. The way she reached out to her husband was what mattered. He left the world in his time but she was left on earth with a total different outcome because she gave forgivness because she was given the Premonition. She made the right choice.

  3. russ Says:

    There is an element of the spiritual that I tried to tap into with Premonition. But, what gets me is that in the end, if she had not intervened, her husband would have lived. She caused his accident. Her permonitions are what killed him. Had she not had them, then he would have driven on past mile marker 200 and lived.

    But, I do agree wtih you. There is that element of being unable to change those things that are destined to happen. Reminds of the serenity prayer:

    God grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, the courage to change the things we can and the wisdom to know the difference.

    Some Fissure foreshadowing for you blog readers.

  4. LOGAN Says:

    I think that this film was ridiculous. I mean if the point of the film was to arouse my spiritual beliefs concerning God, then what’s the point of this being labeled a psychological thriller. I might’ve gone to church instead of the movies if I had had a “premonition” of what I was in for. Hell, maybe it was God’s intention for me to see this dreadful film in order for me to be a lot more decisive when it concerns a trip to the movies. Or maybe it was for me to stop going to the theater, and start going to church. Who the hell knows? I guess God does. But according to “Premonition”, even if I had previously known what I was in for, I’d still have gone to the movies. They couldn’t be more wrong.

  5. Kierstin Says:

    I personally LOVED this movie and could not wait to get the DVD because I felt it was one of those movies you want to watch again after seeing it the first time. After watching it the second time I was quite impressed with how they played out the skipping through time. All the little clues do seem to add up (quite a challenge in my opinion). There were even more clues to what was going on then I had caught the first time. (They actually tell you it is Thursday in the first scene and then tell you the next day is Monday, which I didn’t catch the first time around).

    One reason I wanted the DVD so bad was for an alternate ending which they did provide. I’m still unsure which ending I like the best – but I’m leaning towards the alternate one. One comment made above about giving the audience something to hang onto (even if it doesn’t seem “right”) is provided in the alternate ending. I’d love to know why they chose to go with the ending that they did! I saw an interview about a movie once (might have been this one) that said the cast didn’t know which ending was actually going to be used in the final release until the premier . . . does anyone know if that was indeed this movie? (I may find out when I watch the rest of the extras on my DVD, but thought I would ask just in case.)

  6. chet Says:

    I liked premonition. I kooked at this movie knowing that premonitions are given only to let us know in advance what’s going to happen and prepare us, but not to intervene (too much) to have a different result. Characters in the Bible (if you believe in it) have seen premonitions and they call it visions. I agree with Kay Salem on her opinion and i liked the movie the same way, and as for russ blaming “Linda” the wife as the reason that caused her death is unfair…. actually that’s the catch in the movie because if “Linda” did not gave the husband time with the 2 daughters and did not let the husband realized how wonderful of a wife she is to him, the husband probably wouldn’t change his mind about cheating on her……. And for me, knowing that even though the husband was on the verge of cheating but then had a realization of what matters to him and willing to work out things…. even if the husband died at least “Linda” was not left alone believing that her husband does not love her anymore. Living your life everyday that the person you care most feels the same way you do for them is like heaven on earth. and having a proof of that love (being pregnant again) should be enough for her to live her life……

  7. Anna Says:

    I just watched “Premonition” and i’m confused. DId Jim die but she still wind up pregnant with his child and shes moving? I’m really confused. I hope someone can clarify this for me.

  8. Scott Says:

    Excellent movie. But as I read all the reviews on 3 different sites, it was very hard for people get…not many did. Kay Salem (“The husband was going to die, NO MATTER WHAT”) and Chet (“actually that’s the catch in the movie”) go it, nuf said.

  9. Miss K (UK) Says:

    I’ve just finished watching Premonition and it left me quite emotional, which is an achievement as not many modern movies have that effect on their audience. I loved it! It’s now definitely one of my favourites! Sandra’s acting was brilliant – it was just so realistic (which is probably the reason I was so emotional at the end). Even though I absolutely loved this film, I must admit that I would have preferred the ending to be a happy one.

    Congratulations to Sandra for another excellent movie and please someone award her with the Oscar she deserves!

  10. Loydia Says:

    I came to this website to find out what other people thought of the ending. I liked the movie except for the ending; not because he died, but for the very reason we are all commenting, because you are left to decide what really happened and what the writer actually meant it to be. We watch a movie to be entertained and to be given a good plot with a good ending, not a plot with an ending that leaves you guessing. I do agree that the ending leaves you to believe that you cannot change fate, but she was given a chance to make things right before her husband died. The ending left me confused because it seemed to be inconsistent with the beginning of the movie when she is first told that Jim died. It was the next day before she was told and it appeared she was not at the accident; however, if you notice throughout the movie she nevered remembered what happened until after the premonition and then it would be revealed later that she did experience the happenings in her premontions. One thought is that she did not actually cause the accident, he would have been in an accident at mile marker 220 no matter what. He may have been turning around to go back home after telling Claire that he could not go through with the affair, but since Linda did try and intervene, it placed her at the accident in the end.

  11. Cami Says:

    The entire movie was wacked out. If you payed attention…. the first time they showed the little girl with stiches the family was all in black (assuming that the husband was dead) and Sandra Bullock was getting sent to the nut house cause no one knew how the girl got hurt. Then later in the movie it showed what happend to the little girl and how it happened. Let it be known that the father was then alive. At the end of the movie it had shown that she awakes to her daughter saying the moving van is there, when at the beginning the husband had bought the house. Who knows if the husband really died. As far as I know she could have had a mental break down to dream up everything or even it was all a horrific dream to where the husband never died. I believe the ending is suppose to leave us guessing. Yeah it sucks, but really there is so many different ways to veiw this sort of movie.

  12. js Says:

    I think Jim was going to die no matter what and Linda’s premonition was a way for her to change how he died–a cheater or a loving husband.

  13. Jay Says:

    I know you all talked this out a long time ago but I just saw the movie and as I told my wife I know we just say a movie that was the same just a few years ago.
    Dose anyone know what movie that was? not fissure..

    thanks

  14. Tricia Says:

    I am confused too. I think the way I perceive it is that they were going to move on with their new life in their new house and she had the dream which will now enable her to keep hope and faith and love in her life so that she doesn’t lose the things she loves. If you remember in church she told the priest she is not sure what she should fight for. The dream showed her what to fight for. I agree that it was a bad ending…because you do not know if Jim is dead or alive…..however when the little girl comes in to tell her about the moving truck she has scars on her face–which means something did happen…however when Sanda gets up she is pregnant…how could that be if it were only a dream? Some things are not adding up…..it’s probably left this way so you’re left wondering and if they come out with a sequel they’re sure you’ll attend? I wish I knew what the director had on his mind….