MOVIE: Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (2011)

I have one question for Guillermo del Toro (who co-wrote and produced this stinker) and that question is:  WTBF?  (What the bloody frak?)

This completely awful movie is about a family renovating a big old house that turns out to have, like, a portal to fairyland in the basement.  The fairies eat children’s teeth.  And sometimes whole people.

Yes, it’s a scary movie about . . . the tooth fairy.  Which is to say, it’s a NOT scary movie about . . . the tooth fairy.

WTBF, I ask again.  Considering the fact del Toro clearly had no qualms about ripping off his own film Pan’s Labyrinth for a good portion of this movie’s first half, I would’ve expected it to at least LOOK good.  But though the creatures were kind of cute — you know, for evil teeth fairies — the rest of the film’s look was boring and stale.  Spooky old house, yawn.  Spooky old garden (complete with labyrinth), yawn.  Creepy dark basement, snooze.   There’s absolutely nothing original here whatsoever, the dialogue is pure crappola, and my god, I think Katie Holmes is actually getting worse with practice instead of better.

The one saving grace, for me anyway, was that I really liked the kid.  The kid is the best actor in the entire film.  Go, kid!  Here’s hoping your next movie does not waste your time the way this one did.  Life is short — trust me.  You’ll know what I mean when you hit your 30s.  Try not to piffle it away on piffle.  LIKE I JUST DID.


[Netflix it | Buy/Rent from Amazon]

Genre:  Horror, Crap
Cast: Katie Holmes, Guy Pearce, Bailee Madison, Alan Dale, Jack Thompson, Guillermo del Toro

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2 Responses to “MOVIE: Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (2011)”

  1. Richard Harland Smith Says:

    Seriously, what a bore.

  2. Brian Toohey Says:

    Some info for you about this movie, Meg. 1) It’s a remake of a made-for-tv movie from (I think) the 70’s. 2) It’s the directorial debut of Troy Nixey, who’s been a comic book creator and illustrator (he has a pretty nifty style of drawing and has done some cool horror comics with Dark Horse, the company who prints Hellboy, and has worked on some Hellboy stuff). In other words, he’s a friend of del Toro’s, and del Toro helped him make the jump from comic illustrator to feature film director. I think del Toro was more a producer and hand-holder than anything else, and may have gotten a co-writer credit (if he did) for helping Nixey polish up the old television script. So… keep in mind that the material is not originating with del Toro, and in my opinion he’s best as an idea man, not as a dialogue polisher on previously produced stuff where the ideas are already established.

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