HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Leatherface
Grimsby
Caniba
Bedroom, The
Dark Tower, The
Better Watch Out
Beguiled, The
Year of the Comet
Levelling, The
Dog Days
Annabelle Creation
Once Upon a Time in Shanghai
Sssssss
Woman in Question, The
Atomic Blonde
Doulos, Le
Okja
Bob le Flambeur
Wedding in White
Léon Morin, Priest
Napping Princess, The
Scorpions and Miniskirts
Berlin File, The
Beaches of Agnès, The
Blue Jeans
Garokawa - Restore the World
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
Gleaners & I, The
Peter of Placid Forest
Golden Bird, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Music, Love and Flowers: Monterey Pop on Blu-ray
The Melville Mood: His Final Two Films on The Melville Collection Blu-ray
Always Agnès: 3 from The Varda Collection Blu-ray
Re: Possession of Vehicles - Killer Cars, Trucks and a Vampire Motorcycle
The Whicker Kicker: Whicker's World Vols 5&6 on DVD
The Empress, the Mermaid and the Princess Bride: Three 80s Fantasy Movies
Witching Hour: Hammer House of Horror on Blu-ray
Two Sides of Sellers: The Party vs The Optimists
Norse Code: The Vikings vs The Long Ships
Over the Moon - Space: 1999 The Complete Series on Blu-ray Part 2
   
 
  Don't Be Afraid of the Dark The Ratmen In The WallsBuy this film here.
Year: 2010
Director: Troy Nixey
Stars: Katie Holmes, Guy Pearce, Bailee Madison, Jack Thompson, Julia Blake, Alan Dale, Nicholas Bell, James Mackay, Garry McDonald, Eddie Ritchard, Trudy Hellier, Emelia Burns
Genre: Horror
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: About a century ago this isolated mansion house in the countryside was inhabited by one Mr Blackwood (Garry McDonald), who one night called his maid (Eddie Ritchard) down to the basement where he was working. She crept through the door with a candle to light her way, therefore could not see where her employer was down there in the dark, nor could she see the tripwire stretched across one of the stairs which sent her tumbling to the ground, whereupon Blackwood leapt on top of her. He was brandishing a hammer and chisel, muttering about needing her teeth...

The prologue to this remake of a 1974 television movie, a notable part of the heyday of the American TV horror film, was admittedly arresting, culminating as it did with the revelation that something was living down in a pit beneath the house, it was just a shame the rest of it opened itself up to so much criticism. Certainly director Troy Nixey and his team made the effort to create something which looked the part, but perhaps the problem was with the man who instigated the project in the first place, that huge fan of the original Guillermo del Toro who wanted to give contemporary audiences the same thrill he had enjoyed back in the seventies, watching this as a boy.

It didn't quite work out that way; call the modern audience far more savvy, but lingering questions were raised about precisely what was supposed to be going on which you would imagine should have been explained away by the aims towards a nightmare texture to proceedings, but simply turned a lot of people off for what they saw as an idea not thought through. In the source, it was a young married couple who were at the centre of the trouble, this time it was a family which true to the times consisted of a divorced dad, Alex (Guy Pearce), his new girlfriend Kim (Katie Holmes), and what turned out to be the main character, his daughter Sally (Bailee Madison) who in predictable form nobody believes.

Well, what would you say if your child was seeing little goblins out of the corner of her eye when she tried to get to sleep at night? On the other hand, the evidence for a presence actually existing there appeared to be overwhelming to those of us watching, which made the grown-ups' insistence that nothing freaky was going on look less like denial and more like outright stupidity. For a start, there's the workman Harris (the venerable Australian character actor Jack Thompson - Australia was where this was shot) who encounters the critters in the basement and ends up shall we say the worse for wear, bloody, battered and half conscious. Any ordinary person might have considered there was something amiss, but not Alex and Kim.

At least they could have brokered the idea that they had an infestation of rats, yet not even that is brought up, so you can see why the audience grew so frustrated with the characters. Eventually, of course they do catch on, but it takes an interminable amount of waiting for them to reach that level of awareness as Nixey's roving camera prowls the corridors and rooms of the mansion for the umpteenth time. To the film's credit, there was no cop out ending, and that at least felt more like a horror movie from the seventies than the rest of it had, but del Toro (who co-wrote the script) and his insistence on penning his chillers from a child's point of view was beginning to wear thin, one trip to that hackneyed well too many. As for the goblins, they were naturally CGI creations and looked it, though represented a decent enough foe if you were willing to forget the more formidable Gremlins of the eighties which they owed some latter day debt to. Music by Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1158 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
Keith Rockmael
Paul Shrimpton
Ian Phillips
Jensen Breck
   

 

Last Updated: