Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Movie Review: The Woman in Black (2012)

I like a good horror movie here and there. Saw, Hostel, The Devil's Rejects, Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974), etc.  With the exception of some very close friends, I find myself often disagreeing with the general public on preferring "psychological thrillers" to "violent slashers" flicks.  In my personal opinion, when I go see a horror movie I want to see the director attempt to create disturbing images and visuals that will frighten you as opposed to letting you (the audience) create these disturbing visuals in your head. There is a better way of letting your audience do that: it's called reading a book.

With that said, I saw The Woman in Black pre-screening today for free courtesy of GoFobo.com. I think most of us enjoy free things, so I decided to give the movie a shot. The Woman in Black is rated PG-13 and looked like it would be the type of horror movies I didn't like, but I decided to give it a chance.  This movie is a remake of the 1989 movie that is based off the book from 1983.  The setting is London, England where a man named Arthur Kipps must leave his son behind for a period to act as an attorney for legal matters pertaining to a deceased woman's estate.  In the surrounding area; a series of suicides and other deaths occurring among many children.  Along with these mysterious deaths, Kipps continues a mysterious woman in all-black clothing following him and appearing in different images such as a painting and a photograph. When Kipps decides to stay overnight in the estate, more mysterious acts continue to haunt him such as a rocking chair repeatedly moving by itself, images of dead children, hearing a banging at the front door, and later on finding foot steps that follow one entering the house when he briefly steps outside to try and find the possible culprit.

Overall, I was not impressed with the movie.  I thought the movie opened up very well by showing a mysterious and cryptic image of three little girls leaping through their window.  Following that, the majority of the movie was in my personal opinion, a typical PG-13 horror movie plot where one enters a mysterious haunted area, things start off calmly, but later events tease the idea that there is something wrong.  I thought the foggy setting of the movie was nice and gave me somewhat of a vibe of Tim Burton's 1999 take of Sleepy Hollow.  For me the movie was a little too slow and didn't have any characters actions that really had me caring throughout the movie.  While some of the scenes made people in the theater jump and even caught me slightly off-guard, there were no moments where I was dropping my jaw or clinched my eyes in fear of what I was seeing happening.  I can't say all my favorite horror movies do that, but I tend to see more disturbing images created in those than I do for this one. Without spoiling much of the movie, the ending leaves you with an interesting turn of events that can lead you to think, "Did this happen? Or perhaps this happened?"

Before I give the movie my final score, how I see it for recommending the movie I want to say that I have never read the book nor have I seen the 1989 film.  I am the type of person who does like terrifying images (even if they look "fake") being displayed on the movie screen as opposed to the movie just creating a scene with sound and moments where they attempt to startle the audience when nothing is there and not to follow up for a long time if at all.  If you prefer movies such as Paranormal Activity, The Orphanage (El Orfanato), or other movies such as those, there is a possibility you may like this. Now if you prefer the Saw, Hostel, Nightmare on Elm Street, and other slashers, then I might recommend you pass on it. To me this movie adds nothing different to the horror genre (especially considering the movie is a remake) and for the most part comes off as bland with only a few shocking moments.

Overall, I give The Woman in Black (2012) 5 out of 10.

Thank you for reading. If you want to try and earn free movie tickets to preview screenings like I did for this show, try using 43Kix or GoFobo.com. Now if you want to follow my stuff, sound off against or for me, then make sure you become a fan of my Facebook page by clicking here!

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