Thursday 9 August 2012
In The Dark Half - Seriously spooky
Stunning film from Alastair Siddons dealing with grief and loss. This is a subtlety powerful film that draws you in slowly, to the world of 15yr old Marie and the events surrounding the sudden death of her neighbours son, Sean. He mysteriously dies whilst she is babysitting him one night.
Sean's father, 'Filthy' (Scottish actor Tony Curran), is dedicated to his son, and completely falls apart after his death. Rumored to have murdered his wife when Sean was a baby, he is a loner who spends his spare time hunting in the hills behind his house.
Jessica Barden (last seen in Tamara Drewe) is excellent as disturbed teen, Marie. She brings a wonderful intensity to the role of the lonely, superstitious girl. Marie struggles to get along with her mother, and follows some bizarre rituals to ward off evil spirits. Her escape from the world is also in the woods up on the hill, and as the story unfolds we see her slip further away from reality. There is an underlying feeling of the influence of supernatural beings, and strange lights in the hills that Marie and Sean pay special attention too.
The death of a child must be one of the most difficult things for anyone to ever go through, and the agony is shown so well by Filthy. This is not a 'pretty' movie - it is very raw with a brutal plainess to the cast, and their shabby homes. Set in Autumn, the time of the year when the light starts to fade quickly and winter approaches, there is a cold, grey tone to the film.
Though described as a horror movie, Siddons says he wanted to avoid the cliche of 'candles and crows', and with 'In the Dark Half' he has created the ultimate spooky movie with a chilling twist at the end that leaves you surprised.This is one of the best films to come out of the UK in a long time, and I hope to see it do well world wide.