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When movies could create mood without FX: A look at "The Other"

Some folks under 30 may not believe it, but there once was a time when a movie could create excitement—and just about any other mood—with a great story, direction, production design, music, and acting. That is, without special effects.

Certainly, FX have improved the visual impact of film, but far too often, a movie heavy with FX has little else going for it—although that may be enough for some audiences. Still, people can tire of visual candy.

That's why I took a look at golden oldie: The Other, from 1972.

The story of how a supposedly idyllic New England summer can go all bad, replete with murders, family secrets, and practiced denial, The Other creates a creepiness pretty much unrivaled in modern cinema.

Now available on DVD, although missing any special features other than the original theatrical trailer, this one is highly recommended.

To avoid spoilers in my retrospective, stop reading after "...just a tragic accident."


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