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by Wilson Morales

Distributor: Warner Bros. Pictures
Director: Clint Eastwood
Screenwriter: Peter Morgan
Cast: Matt Damon, Cecile de France, Frankie McLaren, George McLaren, Jay Mohr, Bryce Dallas Howard
Genre: Supernatural Drama
MPAA Rating: PG-13 (for mature thematic elements including disturbing disaster and accident images, and for brief strong language)

Clint Eastwood’s latest film, ‘Hereafter,’ is a letdown.

While the film offers moving performances from a cast that includes Matt Damon, Bryce Dallas Howard, Cecile De France, Jay Mohr, and newcomers George and Frankie McLaren, Eastwood’s drama fails to ignite a spark that will bring an audience to see a film involving the afterlife and supernatural.

Damon plays George Lonegan, a former psychic reader who gave up the vocation to live a normal life. His brother (played by Mohr) wants him to get back into the business so that they can make a fortune while, of course, reconnecting some folks with their dead loved ones; but George would rather walk away and learn how to cook.

While at a cooking class, he meets an attractive woman (played by Howard) and when things seems to be moving towards a healthy relationship, his past catches up with him that’s hard to shake off.

Meanwhile, a French TV anchorwoman is enjoying her affair with her boss in Asia when a tsunami hits town and leaves her in a short comatose state. Barely surviving the catastrophe, Marie (played by De France) is tormented by the blurry visions she’s having while at work. Advised to take some time off to fully recover from the aftershock, Marie decides on a new outlook on life.

Marcus and Jason (played by George and Frankie McLaren) were inseparable as twins. While helping their alcoholic mother get off the bottle, tragedy strikes that leaves Marcus searching for ways to reconnect with his brother and learn to live life o his own.

In dealing with ‘paranormal activity’ sequences, Eastwood is venturing into new territory that doesn’t suit him. Damon, known these days for either straight action films like the ‘Bourne’ franchise or ‘Greene Zone,’ can play roles where dialogue isn’t the focal point, but with this film, his facial expressions did more for the film than anything else. Screenwriter Peter Morgan didn’t add details to his characters that would answers burning questions as to what set him off to finally stop ‘healing’ people.

Individually, all three stories are interesting, but Eastwood has difficulty in weaving them together, and so the film, with its slow pace, fills half empty and less desirable.

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