Saturday, February 4, 2012

THE WOMAN IN BLACK - there is still magic

Daniel Radcliffe, of über Harry Potter fame, stars in this creepy ghost story alongside Ciarán Hinds who has a near ubiquitous presence in current cinema. 

This is a dark story, told quietly - the film is silent for long portions of time. Radcliffe is well chosen for the lead and for a while you forget he was Harry Potter as he imbues the role with real sincerity. However, I couldn't help but question if there was a bit of the wizard still left. This guy is bloody fearless! Every single time he hears a noise or sees an object moving by itself or views an apparition, Radcliffe goes headlong to confront it. It made me chuckle numerous times. He goes out in the middle of poring rain at night to catch a ghost, jumps into a gruesome bog to pull out a dead child at the bottom and continually goes into a area with a number of toys that look like they belong in Charles Manson's bedroom, all without a second thought. What kind of mother was the woman in black?

After viewing 7,550+ films, few at this point have any power to actually shock or genuinely frighten me. Certain moments in The Woman in Black did actually make me cringe with fear. The scare tactics are done well, many you have seen before but regardless, still have the power to make you scream a little on the inside.

On a side note, I find it interesting that, generally speaking, we all seem to believe that when a dead person's physical body is reunited with the kin of the dead person's ghost via the help of a living person, the terror they spread will go away. Why is this? I've seen it numerous times in TV and movies and am curious why we all seem to accept this mythology as making any sense. Why is not every dead person turning into a ghost - only some seem to get this awful privilege of unfinished business. And why would reuniting a dead physical body help a ghost!? Hell, why are there ghosts at all?

Recommended Viewing: The Others - Onibaba - The Haunting (1963)

              Bob Scale: Objective: 7.5   -   Subjective: 7.0
             MetaCritic: 63
 Rotten Tomatoes: 77
                      IMDB: 7.2

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