Theatrical release poster
Directed by Mathieu Kassovitz
Produced by Joel Silver
Robert Zemeckis
Susan Levin
Written by Sebastian Gutierrez
Starring Halle Berry
Robert Downey, Jr.
Charles S. Dutton
John Carroll Lynch
Bernard Hill
Penélope Cruz
Music by John Ottman
Lior Rosner
Cinematography Matthew Libatique
Edited by Yannick Kergoat
Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures (North America)
Columbia Pictures (International)
Release dates
November 21, 2003
Running time
98 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $40 million
Box office $141.6 million[1]

Gothika is a 2003 supernatural horror film directed by Mathieu Kassovitz and written by Sebastian Gutierrez. Halle Berry plays a psychiatrist in a women's mental hospital who wakes up one day to find herself on the other side of the bars, accused of having murdered her husband.

The film was first released on November 21, 2003 in the United States. At the time of its release, Gothika was the most successful film from Dark Castle Entertainment with $141.6 million.


  • Plot 1
  • Cast 2
  • Soundtrack 3
    • Track listing 3.1
  • Release 4
    • Box office 4.1
    • Critical reception 4.2
  • Awards 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


Psychiatrist Dr. Miranda Grey (Halle Berry) works at a mental hospital and has a car accident after trying to avoid a girl (Kathleen Mackey) on a road during a stormy night while driving back home. She rushes to try to help the girl. The girl turns out to be a ghost and possesses Miranda's body by burning her after she extends her hand to the girl. Miranda loses consciousness. Miranda next wakes up in the very hospital she works for, but as a patient treated by her co-worker, Dr. Pete Graham (Robert Downey, Jr.). Drugged and confused, she remembers nothing of what happened after the car accident. To her horror, she learns that her husband Douglas (Charles S. Dutton) was brutally murdered and that she is the primary suspect. While Miranda copes with her new life in the hospital, the ghost uses her body to carry out messages (most noticeably, she carves the words "not alone" into Miranda's arm), which leads her former colleagues to believe Miranda is suicidal and is inflicting the wounds on herself.

Meanwhile, Miranda bonds with fellow inmate and former patient, Chloe Sava (Penélope Cruz). Several times in sessions, Chloe had claimed that she'd been raped while in the hospital, but Miranda had always attributed these stories to mental illness. One night, the door to Miranda's room in the hospital is opened by the ghost that has been haunting her. When she passes Chloe's room in the hospital, she can hear the rape occurring and momentarily sees a man's chest pressed against the window. The man's chest bears a tattoo of an Anima Sola. Miranda realizes that Chloe was not making up these stories and, when she sees Chloe the next day, she apologizes and the two embrace. Chloe warns Miranda that her attacker said he was going to target Miranda next. Miranda begins regaining some of her memories bit by bit and slowly comes to remember herself killing her husband. She realizes that the ghost had used her body to murder Douglas, thus making Miranda the patsy for his murder. This is why all of the physical evidence points to Miranda.

Miranda escapes from the hospital, having recognized the girl as a ghost. Seeking clues to the mystery of why she killed her husband, she goes to a farmhouse in Willow Creek, Rhode Island. In the cellar of the barn, she discovers a room containing a blood-stained bed, what appears to be a box containing drugs, restraints, and video equipment. She watches the tape that is still in the camera and the viewer hears a woman screaming as if tortured or raped. In the final seconds of the video, Douglas walks into the shot, covers a woman's lifeless body on the bed with a sheet, and winks at the camera. At this point, police arrive and one officer comes closer to Miranda and draws a gun on her while she is holding a knife to him. Miranda backs up to a staircase and, all of a sudden, an injured, frantically screaming girl grabs hold of her from the adjoining crawlspace. The police release the girl, and Miranda is taken to jail. While she is in jail, Sheriff Ryan (John Carroll Lynch), who was Douglas's closest friend, talks to Miranda and quizzes her on how she knew all these things. He does not believe her claim that ghosts told her everything and asks her what sort of person the accomplice would be. Miranda uses her experience as a psychiatrist to give a psychological profile, and as she does so, realizes that Ryan fits the profile perfectly. He attacks her and, in the fight, reveals his tattoo (an Anima Sola). Miranda kills the sheriff in an act of self-defense with the help of the ghost.

Miranda is next seen walking with Chloe on a city sidewalk, discussing how each helped the other come to terms with her experiences. Miranda claims to be free of the ghost's influence and sends Chloe off in a taxi. Miranda then sees a young boy standing in the middle of the road who appears as though he is about to be struck by a fire truck. Miranda yells for the boy to move but, after the fire truck passes through the boy without harming him, she realizes he was only a ghost. As Miranda walks away, a poster with the words "Have you seen Tim?" and a picture of the same boy is shown taped to a pole next to the street on which Miranda is walking.



Film score by John Ottman
Released November 18, 2003
Genre Soundtracks
Film scores
Length 49:51
Label Varèse Sarabande 302 066 520
John Ottman chronology
X2 (2003) Gothika (2003) Cellular (2004)

The score's original music was composed by John Ottman. "Behind Blue Eyes" by Limp Bizkit was featured in the film but was not available on the soundtrack. The record was released on November 18, 2003 via Varèse Sarabande label[2]

Track listing

No. Title Length
1. "Prologue"   2:11
2. "Miranda's Theme"   1:47
3. "Remembering Rachael"   2:35
4. "Final Escape"   6:22
5. "Road Block / First Contact"   2:37
6. "An Affair?"   3:03
7. "First Escape"   4:20
8. "One of Us / The Shower"   4:01
9. "Willow Creek"   3:38
10. "Recollections"   3:17
11. "The House / Dream"   4:01
12. "I’m the Mirror / Not Alone"   2:24
13. "Revelation"   4:44
14. "You’re Next"   2:42
15. "I See Dead Kids"   1:50
Total length:


Box office

Gothika was released on November 21, 2003 in North America, grossing $19,288,438 in the opening weekend and ranking at #2, behind The Cat in the Hat. It went on to gross $59,694,580 in the domestic market and $81,896,744 from foreign markets for a worldwide total of $141,591,324. In comparison with the film's $40 million budget, the film was a financial success.[3]

Critical reception

Critical reception was mostly negative; the review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a 14% approval rating along with the general consensus that "Berry's acting talents can't save Gothika from its preposterous plot and bad dialogue." Jeremy Wheeler at All Movie Guide gave the film 2½ stars out of a possible five stating: "...this dud offers nothing new, nor anything close to horrifying for fright fans." The site Metacritic gives the film a score of 38 out of 100, indicating generally unfavorable reviews.



2004 Teen Choice Awards

  • Choice Movie Actress - Drama/Action Adventure - Halle Berry

2004 Black Reel Awards

2004 Kids Choice Awards

  • Best Favorite Actress

2004 Golden Trailer Award

  • Best Horror/Thriller

2004 Image Awards

2004 MTV Movie Awards

2004 Teen Choice Awards

  • Choice Movie – Thriller

See also


  1. ^ Gothika at Box Office Mojo
  2. ^ "Gothika (2003)". Retrieved 2014-05-25. 
  3. ^ "Gothika (2003)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2012-09-14. 

External links

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