Thursday, 21 June 2012

Half Arsed Review : The Woman In Black

I was home alone last night and decided that I'd take a look at a horror film as I had some Doritos and Ice Cream, which are hard to consume when button mashing an xbox game.

The Woman In Black is a very atmospheric horror and is well worth a watch if you like ghost stories. It centers on a lawyer who goes to a remote house on a causeway to tidy up the recently deceased lady's paperwork and gets more than he bargained for.

I had a bit of trouble with the titular character's name. Arthur Kipps was also the name of the main character from half a sixpence, so there's part of me that likes to think of this as the unofficial sequel.

The film starts off really creepy with three girls having a tea party, which isn't creepy in itself, but it's when they suddenly stop and stare right at the camera that you get chills and what happens next sets the whole tone for the film. The special effects are very good and don't detract from the piece (here's looking at you Insidious) and the whole film is reeking in foreboding atmosphere.

My only complaint? Daniel Radcliffe. When he's first seen I found it hard to not think of him as Harry Potter, which isn't the actor's fault, it's just all I've seen him do for the past however many years he's been doing it for. It doesn't take long however for him to shake off Hogwarts and become a single parent/lawyer. But he's just not a very good actor in my opinion.

Case in point. At one moment in the film he's angry at someone for not warning him about the titular woman of the title, however instead of portraying a realistic amount of anger, bitterness and resentment he just comes across as being a little "ticked off"

He doesn't detract from the film as a whole, but I wish they'd have chosen a more well rounded actor who can portray emotions other than "teen angst" (I think Radcliffe may have played the part on stage, and maybe he's more suited for that version if it is the case)

But aside from this, I think it's a great return to form for Hammer Studios and a worthy addition to any horror fan's collection. The film made me jump, made me anxious and didn't outstay it's welcome.

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