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When her little brother, Martin, experiences the same events that once tested her sanity, Rebecca works to unlock the truth behind the terror, which brings her face to face with an entity that has an attachment to their mother, Sophie.
I am not usually a fan of poltergeist movies. No, that is not entirely true. I’m tired of watching the same poltergeist movies over and over again. I really enjoyed Insidious, The Grudge, Poltergeist (Both), Oculus, The Others…Come to think of it, there are actually a lot of good ghost stories out there. I guess I’ve just become jaded due to the onslaught of sequels and unimaginative carbon copies. There is a formula for a “good” haunting movie that has become so overused and filled with jump scares and the like that I really struggle to look forward to the next Annabelle film or Amityville 7.
Lights Out is different. It’s a feature length version of the popular short film by writer/director David F. Sandberg. Sure, the first few scares are totally jump scares, and totally predictable ones at that, but holy fucking Cronenberg were they scary. Rather than building that tension and plodding along with the plot, Lights Out throws you in head first and then starts to build on the story; a story that thankfully also follows fewer cliches than what I can usually stomach.
The mentally unstable mother and wise-beyond-his-years son are pretty commonplace, but the heroine daughter is a nice change of pace. She’s ballsy, bad-ass and totally channels a bit of that Ripley attitude we all love. Her boyfriend is a total prat though. Reminds me of this guy I shared a flat with that used to grow new strains of mushrooms in his unwashed coffee cups. The ghost is your typically overpowered malicious entity; same old, same old; but the direction and editing do a good job of making her all the more maniacal.
Unfortunately, all the scary bits are in the first half of the movie or (sadly) the trailer. The latter half of the movie becomes more of a supernatural action romp which, while entertaining, left a lot to be desired. Although a few things remain unexplained by the end, there was enough background story provided to not leave behind gaping plot holes, which is always a plus for me.
The movie starts on a high note and ends on a pretty monotonous low one, but it was definitely saved by the pretty solid acting, production value and special effects. It’s a good film overall and while it wont be making any of my top ten lists, it is most definitely something that I would recommend to folks that enjoy a good supernatural ghost story. It’s good popcorn-passing fun that does what it’s supposed to. Check out the trailer blow and give it a chance.
Site founder. Horror enthusiast. Metalhead.