White Noise

Movie review by
Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
White Noise Movie Poster Image
Dumb would-be thriller -- save your money.
  • PG-13
  • 2005
  • 101 minutes

Parents say

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Kids say

age 14+
Based on 9 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.


Tense and creepy throughout, some scary surprises and violence.


Brief strong language.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Brief drinking.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this movie is a thriller with an overall theme that may be disturbing to some family members. There are brief grisly images and references to violence and some scary (but well within PG-13-range) surprises. A character attempts suicide and others are killed, including one who is shot. There is brief strong language and brief drinking. The movie contains a reference to "an earthquake in India" that may be upsetting due to current events. And according to this movie, only white, middle class people communicate with each other after death.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bytommysportsgirl April 9, 2008

A Good Scare

Not bad for those wanting a good scare!
Adult Written byjennbeau April 9, 2008

Held on to pillow....

WOW....a bit scary...even a part where my hubby jumped!!! To think that there may be times when those things happen when our loved ones reach out to us from bey... Continue reading
Teen, 16 years old Written byhorrorandfame01 February 26, 2018


I first watched it when I was seven and was scared because the whole thing is about demons and contacting the dead. I watched it again recently and thought it... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byfuzzykat805 April 9, 2008

Bored to Death

I was so excited when i first saw the comercial, but when i went to see it i almost fell asleep!

What's the story?

WHITE NOISE stars Michael Keaton as Jonathan Rivers, who is blissfully married to such a completely beautiful and perfect and loving (and newly pregnant) woman (Chandra West) that you know she'll be toast within fifteen minutes after we meet her. Sure enough, after a half-heard "I love you" as she drives away and an incomplete voicemail, she disappears. Her body is found sometime later and it appears that after a car crash, she was severely wounded and unable to save herself after falling into the river. Jonathan notices that a man has been following him. The man says his name is Raymond Price and he has been receiving messages from Jonathan's wife. At first, Jonathan does not believe him, but then, well, it would be a pretty short movie if he was not convinced. So then the real story gets going – about how he starts to get messages from people who aren't actually dead yet and how all of this meddling with powers he does not understand is deeply upsetting to, well, the powers he does not understand.

Is it any good?

The plot of White Noise is not the point -- it's all about the thrill ride, but unfortunately it's just not that thrilling. Every would-be surprise is telegraphed in advance with the most venerable and uninspired of movie cliches, everything that has been done to, um, death over and over and over and then successfully parodied and ridiculed to death in movies from Scream to Scary Movie.

The camera closes in tight on someone, so we know something is happening just outside the frame. The music builds and we know something bad is about to happen. Someone promises not to leave and then he does and...something bad happens. And of course the secret hideout is all drippy exposed beams and sputtering lights. Yawn. This isn't an especially bad movie. It just isn't an especially good one. Jonathan's wife is supposed to be a writer whose latest book is called The Eternal Wait. As I checked my watch to see how much longer the movie was going to go on, I felt that should have been the title of the movie.

Talk to your kids about ...

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Movie details

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