The Watchers

When 28-year-old artist Mina finds shelter after getting stranded in an expansive, untouched forest in western Ireland, she unknowingly becomes trapped alongside three strangers that are watched and stalked by mysterious creatures each night.

  • Released: 2024-06-07
  • Runtime: 102 minutes
  • Genre: Mystery, Thrillers
  • Stars: Siobhan Hewlett, Alistair Brammer, Kya Brame, Shane O'Regan, Shannon Antonia, Hannah Howland, Anthony Morris, Kofi De Graft Jordan, Cara Steele, Dakota Fanning, Georgina Campbell, Olwen Fouéré, Seán T. Ó Meallaigh, Jacob Greenway, Diarmuid de Faoite, Andrea Bechis, Ann Marie Horan, Jim Tighe
  • Director: Ishana Night Shyamalan
  • martinrobertson300482 - 19 June 2024
    Went into this movie blind. Only knowing it was a horror movie. But thinking it was the latest from M Night Shyamalan. He's a producer, but this is his daughter Ishana Night Shyamalans first effort.

    Me and the mate i saw this movie with usually rip films like this apart, but this one really wasn't that bad. It was a slow burner, but i wanted to see what happened in the movie and liked its mysterious approach, as I was invested enough waiting for that inevitable twist.

    But the film isn't really anything new. This is "body snatchers" territory. But also a tamer version of that. I was waiting for the movie to move up a gear. But there's no real shocks or surprises in a sombre watch.
  • jboothmillard - 17 June 2024
    The Watched
    This scary movie was the directorial debut of Ishana Night Shyamalan (also writing), daughter of The Sixth Sense director M. Night Shyamalan (producing), it looked worthwhile from the trailer but I read it was receiving mixed reviews from critics. Basically, in Galway, Ireland, American immigrant Mina (Dakota Fanning) works in a pet shop; she has struggled with guilt for fifteen years after distracting her mother (Siobhan Hewlett) while driving, inadvertently causing her a car accident that killed her. This accident caused her to become estranged from her twin sister Lucy. One day, Mina is tasked with delivering a valuable parrot to a zoo in Belfast. After getting lost on the way, her car breaks down, and she is stuck in the middle of the forest. She tries calling for help but cannot get a phone signal, and when she takes the parrot, naming it Darwin, trying to find help, she ends up going in circles. Mina notices an old woman in the woods; following her she finds a bunker-like building, nicknamed 'The Coop'. The old Irish woman, Madeline (Olwen Fouéré), introduces herself and brings her inside, where she meets two other occupants, Ciara (Georgina Campbell) and Daniel (Oliver Finnegan). Madeline explains that there are mysterious creatures called 'The Watchers' watching them from outside the other side of a one-way mirror window every night. Madeline explains there are rules to follow: the Watchers will kill anyone outside the shelter at night, they must never open the door to anyone outside during the night, and they must never enter the Burrows. The group has been stranded in the forest for several months without seeing a Watcher; Madeline claims that the sight of a Watcher will be enough to kill them. The only things to do in the Coop are talk to each other, draw, read, and watch a DVD of the reality dating show "The Lair of Love" repetitively. Ciara tells Mina that her husband John (Alistair Brammer) left the Coop days ago but has not returned. The group can leave the shelter during the daytime, which lasts only a few hours, to venture out for food and attempt to find a way out of the forest. Mina convinces Daniel to explore the Burrow, the subterranean tunnels where the Watchers retreat during the day because of their aversion to sunlight. Being sure to stay in the light from above and the torch, in the cavern below, Mina finds several items, including a camcorder before narrowly escaping a Watcher. That night, John is heard knocking and calling outside the Coop but Madeline refuses to let him in. Mina has set up the camcorder to capture a Watcher, and the group insists "John" shows himself on camera. When "John" fails to verify himself to Ciara, he appears to be dragged away. The Watchers crack the mirror and Madeline berates them for breaking a rule. The following day, Madeline returns the items to the Burrow to appease the Watchers. As winter falls, the group begins to turn hostile against each other. In a moment of madness, Daniel locks Mina and Madeline out of the Coop at night, forcing them to hide in an improvised den in the forest. They witness the Watchers, humanoid creatures that imitate and can transform into the Coop's occupants. The creatures react angrily to Madeline and Mina's absence. The pair return to the Coop and Madeline explains that the Watchers are shapeshifting Fairies trying to learn to mimic humans. The group notices a hidden door under the carpet of the Coop. They escape through it before the Watchers attack; at the bottom of a ladder, they find an underground study. On an old desk computer, Mina plays a series of video diaries of Professor Rory Kilmartin (John Lynch), the Coop's creator. Kilmartin came to the forest to study the creatures and managed to capture one of them, bonding with it. In his last entry, the despondent professor explains how to escape from the forest, following the flight of any birds above them. The video ends with him requesting that his research be destroyed and climbing the ladder back into the Coop to kill the captured Watcher and himself. The group spends what might be their last night alive, with Ciara and Daniel dancing to "Young Hearts Run Free" by Candi Staton, and Mina telling Madeline about what happened to her mother. The next day, the group follows the professor's directions, along with tree markers they made, and they use Darwin and other birds to guide them to the river at the edge of the forest. On the way, after finding a stone marker, Madeline explains that the Watchers are Fairies, who were deprived of their wings, driven underground, and imprisoned in the forest, and humans have warred against them for a long time. The group is forced to run as it gets dark, but they reach the river and the professor's boat in time. But Daniel falls behind and is killed by the Watchers. Mina, Madeline, and Ciara get into the boat, realising that the creatures cannot swim, and they are shocked to see a Watcher mimicking John, and another transforming into Daniel. Mina heads to the professor's university to destroy his notes. She discovers that humans and fairies once lived in harmony, with some even mating and producing hybrid offspring that could withstand daylight. Then she shows Ciara photographs revealing that Madeline was the professor's late wife. Madeline is the Watcher the professor captured and eventually transformed into her. But Ciara is revealed to be a disguised Madeline when the real Ciara arrives. Madeline changes her form, knocking out Ciara and attacking Mina. Madeline tells them she was an outcast among the Watchers because she could go out in daylight, and she plans to kill and replace Mina. Mina reveals Madeline's status as a half-human hybrid, persuading her to let go of her hatred towards humans, and that there may be others like her. Madeline sprouts wings and leaves. Later, Mina reconciles with Lucy. Meanwhile, Madeline, in the form of a human child, keeps watch over Mina. Also starring Hannah Dargan as Young Mina, Emily Dargan as Young Lucy, Joel Figueroa as the voice of Darwin, Thabile Michelle Hlongwane as the Newscaster, Anthony Morris as Burke, Shane O'Regan as Collin, and Seán T. Ó Meallaigh as the voice of a Watcher. The performances of Fanning, Fouéré, Lynch, and the others are alright, the script is clunky, the scares are meagre and dull, the plot is patchy, and the twists (like father, like daughter) don't really work, the only good thing was the spooky score by Abel Korzeniowski, otherwise, it was a dull, disappointing, and only just watchable supernatural horror. Okay!