Friday, August 26, 2011
Don't Be Afraid of the Dark
My position as a member of the media allowed me to gain access to a special screening of the newest film from Guillermo Del Toro's production company......and by that I mean it came out today, or yesterday when I saw it and it's carried over until today. So I got to see it, meerrghghg. That's frustrated for I guess it was ok but I was kinda hoping for more.
So the movie starts off, I'm kinda assuming it's 1804 because later in the movie Guy Pearce mentions that a coin his daughter found appears to be from 1804. What does this have to do with the plot? I guess it's to help establish its kinda a long time ago, seriously like they just kinda casually mention "hey this coin might be from 1804......weird...so how was your day?" So either way so I kinda assume this part of the film takes place in 1804, that's not really here nor there though so moving along. Either way, a woman is cleaning some old asshole's room when he rings the bell for her and uses a wire to trip her on the stairs removes her teeth and feeds them to little demony things that we don't see at this point in the movie. This part of the film is very gritty, this is good and bad in my opinion. First, this is it, it's as gritty as this film gets. Which, you'd think being like your first scene in the movie you'd want to set precedence for the rest of your movie but you're not. never again is this film that disturbing. For me personally that's a good thing I don't like torture porn, but then why have this there? whatever I don't really know again moving on. Flash forward to many years in the future....I'm not sure where, somewhere between the 1980's and yesterday 1230am. Why? Well they had a polaroid camera and like used it for family photos and what not, but the clothes, the cars, pretty much everything kinda is pretty modern. And I'm not complaining so much, but the polaroid camera becomes a main plot point in this film and who the fuck owns a polaroid camera this day and age? outside of a state fair where have you seen a polaroid camera? Again, not really a big deal but it bothered me at no point do you really know where you are and there's a lot of contradiction and it bothered me, I don't need to be told "this movie takes place in 1995 between may and july" but I would like to see it and think "oh it's sometime in the 80's" a really good example is super 8, at no point did they say "it's 1979" although apparently it was 1979 and I narrowed it down to 78-81 based on some things that were thrown in. So yeah, FUCK YOU! I'm starting a new paragraph because I really gotta move on and I kinda think that will help.
So Yeah, a little girl is on a plane, she meets guy pearce and Katie holmes there. Katie holmes gives her a creepy bear......apart from the teeth removal this is the creepiest thing you'll see in this movie. That's not a stab at the movie, but the bear is fucking creepy as shit. They go back to THE SAME MANSION WHERE THE GUY REMOVED THE GIRLS TEETH! ::duh duh duh:: Guy Pearce is fixing up the house and going to sell it to get his career back on track, they introduce the little girl who's name I need to look up, seriously they say it all the time and it didn't stick at all. Sally, ok they introduce Sally to a construction worker who's as far as I can tell his job was to stand around and look ominously into the distance. He has some sort of story but it's never told, you just know that he's somehow related to Chisel McToothRemover from the beginning. Sally starts talking to her grates Ominous McToothremover is stabbed and it traumatizes her and things get creepy.
What did I like about this movie? The special effects were cool, it was very pretty and nicely shot, the fairy/gnome/gobliny things didn't seem overly CGI and spent most of the time in the dark they took their time showing them and when they did it was creepy. The movie had good atmosphere and a couple nice jump scares just to keep things interesting.
What didn't I like? Well first off the best actor in this fucking movie was 7 years old! the little girl did a good job but I may just think that because the rest of the cast was FUCKING WOODEN AS SHIT! you could've replaced them all with planks and no one would've noticed. It drags in quite a few parts, so you really feel the length. The movie has so many horror cliches it's almost silly, which could be in part that this is a remake and they just kinda kept a lot of the cliches but I haven't seen the original. Speaking of which, I can't prove this, But i kinda feel like the reason they had a polaroid in this movie was because it was in the original and they were just to lazy to change it and so they just left it. Looks completely outta place but whatever, also if you've ever owned a camera that has a reload-able flash this movie will drive you nuts. She continues to use it even though IT RAN OUTTA FLASHES LIKE 8 SHOTS AGO! Oh and befoer I forget this, for most of the movie the creatures whisper, which is genuinely creepy and scary and I liked it, but at one point Sally asks "What do you want?" and one of said creatures pops out at her and screams his answer. Well, I'm 90% sure it was the voice of the kool-aid man! I swear it sounded like the fucking KOOL-AID MAN! you know one sure fire way to make your monsters NOT SCARY? Have them offer you diabetes inducing red flavored juice! I fully expected him to burst through a wall and scream "OH YEAH" and then pour juice in Sally's mouth.....that might have improved the movie.
Ultimately this movie wasn't awful, it had good atmosphere it just drug and there's a lot of bad, most of it isn't even THAT bad it's just stuff that bothered ME! if you're gonna see it do it on a matinee so you don't pay full price, if you're undecided wait til it comes out on DVD and rent it, if you weren't then don't it's not gonna change your mind. Very very pretty film but there needed to be a little more to go on for it to really work for me.