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Whistle and I'll Come to You (2010)

Not Rated | | Horror | TV Movie 24 December 2010
After placing his ailing wife Alice (Gemma Jones) in a care home elderly academic James Parkin (Sir John Hurt) goes to stay at a wintry out-of-season hotel which they used to visit together... See full summary »


Andy De Emmony


Neil Cross, M.R. James (short story)

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Cast overview:
John Hurt ... James Parkin
Gemma Jones ... Alice Parkin
Lesley Sharp ... Hetty
Sophie Thompson ... Carol


After placing his ailing wife Alice (Gemma Jones) in a care home elderly academic James Parkin (Sir John Hurt) goes to stay at a wintry out-of-season hotel which they used to visit together. Walking on a deserted beach he finds a ring with a Latin inscription,which translates as "Who Is This Who Is Coming". He takes the ring back to the hotel but at night he hears loud banging on his door, even though he is the sole guest, as well as seeing a white-clad apparition on the beach. He is seemingly the victim of ghostly revenge. But who is the avenger? Written by don @ minifie-1

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horror movie remake | remake | See All (2) »




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Release Date:

24 December 2010 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

BBC Drama Productions See more »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


James Parkin: I wish you'd seen her when she was herself. I was a very lucky man. The only thing is, you do begin to think, with no children, that when you're gone, there's nothing left. A whole lifetime of loving someone just finished up. And forgotten. It all seems strangely wasteful to me. Inelegant. The universe is usually so parsimonious; conservation of energy and so on. But not when it comes to love. When it comes to love, the universe is oddly profligate.
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Version of Omnibus: Whistle and I'll Come to You (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

Probably the biggest disappointment of the festive season
18 January 2011 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

I wouldn't say Whistle and I'll Come to You is a complete disaster, but it does fall short, especially when the story it is based on is as good as it is. Not only that, it is for me the most disappointing programme of the festive/New Year season, and that is saying a lot seeing as there were quite a few gems(ie. Toast, Eric and Ernie). Starting with the good things, the location shooting is very evocative and atmospheric and the camera work is interesting. And the acting of John Hurt, Gemma Jones and Lesley Sharp is impressive, though I think all three have been better.

Conversely, Whistle and I'll Come to You was a big disappointment, not so much as the previous year's Turn of the Screw but as an adaptation and on its own terms I was disappointed. The ghost story is truly great, it has an unsettling, dark story and has suspense and chills. Here, Whistle and I'll Come to You has its moments but that wasn't enough. Apart from the occasional moment that made me jump I wasn't gripped or unsettled and some scenes(at the beach) were laughable. I don't think the pace helped either, it was really quite dull. Granted, I would have rathered that the story unfolded slowly to add to the atmosphere, but that leads me to my next point.

The atmosphere here is rather empty. For me there was very little suspense or tension, while the ambiguity is not done well at all. The script seemed lacking too, some of it seemed too forced, superficial and methodical, and the story is a mixed bag with some decent bits merged with some very disconnected ones, sadly the disconnected scenes outweigh the decent ones. Also, why call it Whistle and I'll Come to You when the whistle of the title is excised entirely. It's like having an adaptation of Pinocchio but without the puppet or something like that. As much as I liked the production values, the modernisation didn't work, it took away from the authenticity and effectiveness that the adaptation could have had easily, while the climatic scene did little for me as it was rather obvious after about 5-10 minutes. In conclusion, a big disappointment but the cast do their best and the adaptation at least looks good so it is not a complete debacle. 3/10 Bethany Cox

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