Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Lights Out - The scoop and digest

Trivia attack.

What does this and The Babadook have in common?

They're both adapted from respective director's horror shorts.

James Wan helps produce David F. Sandberg's feature length debut.

Teresa Palmer - Rebecca
Maria Bello - Sophie
Gabriel Bateman - Martin
Alexander DiPersia - Bret
Alicia Vela-Bailey - Diana

At a mannequin warehouse, man is stalked and soon killed by an entity only visible in darkness.

Albeit in different setting, opening scene with co-worker Esther (Lotta Losten) basically re-enacts horror short.

Bitchy stepdaughter Rebecca unsuccessfully tries to drag brother Martin away from depression prone mother Sophie.

Boyfriend Bret makes canvas hum rancid.

Adults don't usually have 'imaginary' friends, but Sophie begs to differ.

Rebecca escapes unharmed during meeting with apparition and discovers 'Diana' scratched on room's floor.

When admitted to Mulberry Hills for depression, former mental patient Sophie befriended Diana who suffered from a rare skin disorder, rendering her extremely sensitive to light.

She died from overexposure during a medical experiment (as revealed in flashback when Rebecca finds Paul's box of research), and Sophie made the big mistake of discarding companionship like yesterday's chip paper.

As Sophie is her only connection to physical world, nasty ghost kills anybody attempting to cure negative state of mind.

Rebecca wants answers, but Sophie vehemently denies the truth.

I guess she can't handle the truth.

Sophie passes Rebecca note reading 'I need help' and twigging Diana is controlling mother, lights are turned on.

Diana traps Martin and Rebecca downstairs and basement is enveloped in darkness.

Black light shows Diana's obsession with Sophie scrawled on wall and having already escaped, Bret brings police.

Excuse me, what the fuck are they gonna do?

Hmmm, perhaps less than nothing.

Sophie saves family via a bullet to the head which causes Diana to disintegrate and vanish.

In the aftermath, it's implied Diana may live on through Sophie's offspring.

Good but not great.

Time of day offers no protection from vengeful antagonist who's naturally the nucleus of precisely staged boo moments.

Build up is obvious, but Rebecca examining disfigured mannequins and Diana spinning around make neck hairs stand on end.

Scare tactics don't always work, as baddie suddenly appearing in close quarters or dragging somebody away wears anorexic.

Story has purpose, but poor script and lacklustre performances forces us not to give a monkey's toss about who survives and dies.

Okay, I felt some sympathy towards Sophie.

In truth, only lesser characters kick the bucket.

Here's a few titbits.

Lotta Losten helped with horror short, so why do credits claim otherwise?

Obscure deal between husband and wife?

Diana isn't exactly fond of light and areas covered by darkness drain G's health in excellent last gen action video game Shadows of the Damned.

Martin's bedroom is a less than subtle advert for DC Comics.

Despite various imperfections, one of the best horrors in recent years already has a sequel confirmed.

Best keep a torch and shitload of batteries handy.

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