Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Woman in Black (2012)

Starring Daniel Radcliffe

Directed by James Watkins

Release Date(s)- February 3rd, 2012 (US)/ February 10th, 2012 (UK)

Daniel Radcliffe stars as Arthur Kipps, a London lawyer tasked with carrying out the will and property of Alice Drablow, which includes Eel Marsh House. Soon, Kipps is drawn into mystery and fear as a ghastly woman in black continues to haunt him, whose presence results in the death of a child. Arthur must now solve the mystery before his young son comes to visit him and could be in the sights of the woman in black...

First off, I must applaud Daniel Radcliffe for his strong performance so soon after finishing the Harry Potter franchise. Radcliffe does a great job of using body language and his expressive face to showcase his own terror and to make his fear translate to the audience. Also, director James Watkins does a commendable job of injecting a moody atmosphere in the visuals. Most of the time, it's what you only see in shadows or hear that becomes more terrifying rather than when the titular character shows up.

Therefore, the major problem with the film is that it relies too heavily on jump scares. 90% of the scares in the film are when something (or someone) literally jumps in front of the camera and scares the most susceptible to the cheapest of cheap tricks in horror. I know this is a ghost story, but there are actual moments in the film that are chilling, such as when Kipps has dinner with the Dailys or when Kipps has an encounter with a little girl in a fire. Good horror is when the mood and the tension builds to an event, not when a "boogeyman" jumps in front of the camera.

Rating: * * * of  5

No comments: