Day #205: Darkness Falls (2003)

[From IMDb:] A vengeful spirit has taken the form of the Tooth Fairy to exact vengeance on the town that lynched her 150 years earlier. Her only opposition is the only child, now grown up, who has survived her before.
My take:

Although Darkness Falls used to be one of my go-to movies, it’s been a few years since I watched it; and it seems that, in this case, distance really did make my heart grow fonder.

It just turns out that that’s not a good thing.

The first thing I noticed is that, despite being kinda corny at times, the movie actually has a few genuinely creepy moments. It doesn’t fall back on the use of jump scares that often, preferring instead to use the good old technique of hinting that there’s something in the darkness waiting to get you; and, because the dark is scary (regardless of how old you are), this is always going to be an effective way of going about things in a horror movie.

Of course, the final act is less like a horror movie and more like an action movie, which is why everything kind of…falls apart. The rules of a horror movie no longer apply, the outcome becomes entirely predictable, and any of the suspense that might have existed in earlier parts of the movie quickly fades away. It all becomes a matter of sitting back and waiting for the action movie ending to play out.

The interesting thing, from my perspective, is that Darkness Falls and Boogeyman are inextricably linked in my mind, with this movie always being the one that came out on top. Yet, whereas my recent viewing of Boogeyman led to a more positive view of it, I feel like the opposite has to be said about Darkness Falls.

The shift in tone from horror movie to action movie might have made the movie more accessible to a wider audience (which is what the studio wanted, I’m sure), but it also took away from the actual, y’know, horror of the concept. And that’s super disappointing, considering I think it actually showed a lot of potential in the beginning.

Random tidbit: There’s a moment where Michael (Lee Cormie) yells out to Kyle (Chaney Kley) and my brain screamed “HE’S AUSTRALIAN!” at me. My brain knows its Australian accents, apparently, because Cormie is indeed an Aussie.


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