“The Silent Hill Movie’s Three Layers Of Reality Explained”
Just like the games that inspired it the Silent Hill movie features three different layers of reality – here’s how it works. Following the success of Capcom’s Resident Evil games in the late 1990s that was a sudden rush of survival horror titles, including Dino Crisis and Parasite Eve. Silent Hill arrived in 1999 and followed the main character searching the titular town to find his missing daughter; monsters, cultists and terror await. Silent Hill set itself apart from rivals by placing a focus on psychological horror than simply fighting monsters and it took strong influence from Jacob’s Ladder and the work of David Lynch.
Silent Hill 2 is considered the series’ crowning achievement for both its fantastic story and unnerving horror. Sadly, the franchise is currently in limbo following disappointing titles like 2012’s Silent Hill: Downpour, which was the most recent entry. Game auteur Hideo Kojima (Metal Gear Solid) and Guillermo del Toro collaborated on a demo called P.T., which was secretly a sequel dubbed Silent Hills. To the heartbreak of many, this was later scrapped following a bitter fallout between Kojima and Konami. There’s been little sign of the series continuing since then, though reports suggest two more Silent Hill games might be in development.
Like most major video games franchises, Silent Hill also received a couple of movie adaptations. Silent Hill from 2006 is considered one of the better adaptations and draws heavily from the first game’s story while cherrypicking elements from later games. The film follows Rose as she brings her adopted daughter Sharon to the abandoned town of Silent Hill. Here are the movie’s three layers of reality broken down.
The Real World
The Real World town of Silent Hill in the film was abandoned years before due to a raging coal fire burning beneath it. Rose’s husband Chris (Sean Bean, Game Of Thrones) comes to the “real” town looking for her and Sharon with a police escort, and while they don’t encounter any monsters in the ghost town, Chris does sense his wife when they briefly share the same space in different dimensions.
The Fog World
Rose enters the Fog World from the moment she enters Silent Hill with the whole town shrouded in an eerie gray mist. This world was created by Alessa, Sharon’s original self who was horribly burned by the town’s cultists and is seeking revenge. She keeps them trapped in this Fog World, which contained ashes from the fire burning in the Otherworld and a few monsters like the “Lying Figure.”
The Otherworld is Silent Hill’s hellish vision of the town which is completely enveloped in darkness. Paint is seen peeling from worlds as Silent Hill transforms into a landscape of rust, gore and dead bodies. This represents Alessa’s pain and rage at her burning and the Otherworld is home to countless monsters like Pyramid Head and The Janitor.
The cultists hiding out in the church sound a warning siren to others when Otherworld is approaching, which is the only place Alessa can’t enter. Silent Hill games like 2008’s Homecoming would later adopt the movie’s interpretation of Otherworld.
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