Friday, February 10, 2012

Freaky Friday: The Woman in Black (film)

FINALLY! Last week as my "date night" with the hubster, we went to see The Woman in Black starring Daniel Radcliffe. If you are a new reader to the blog, I draw your attention to this post where I raved about the play - running in London for twenty years and absolutely phenomenal. I also posted the trailer for the film here. So, it was with anxious energy that rivaled the energizer bunny's in which I waited for this film to hit theaters. And...
Let down. Let me say first that Radcliffe is a wonderful actor and clearly breaks from the Harry Potter character, but...he's far too young for the part. His looks, his voice, and even his delivery all lack conviction that the role demands. In the play, the connection between the two men is so important - they're the only ones ever on stage, except for the woman in black - and the film doesn't capture that bond at all.
No chemistry.
My other big gripe is the use of cheap thrills as a scare tactic. A bird screaming, a toy bell ringing, and a shadow in the corner all add up to cheesy old school horror tricks. They're not scary, they're annoying, especially when watching it in a theater with teenage girls yelling EVERY time.
Not a ghost, just a creepy doll. Who would let their kids play with this???
Hubster thought the ending fit with the story, but I have to disagree. It may have worked for the progression of the plot, but it was lackluster and the obvious choice. No surprises. No twists. It ends exactly like you think it is going to end, which in my not so humble opinion has no place in a "horror" movie. Although, this film isn't frightening enough for that particular genre label.
The house is pretty amazing.
Overall, if you've seen the play, forget the film. You'll be disappointed. If you haven't seen the play, save your dollars, visit London and see the play. My one hope is the movie will do well enough that the play goes on a US tour and maybe even lands on Broadway.

Rating: D+ (Sorry Harry, Daniel. Still loved you in Equus and of course the Potter series.)

Have you built up a film or book in your head for so long that when you finally get to experience it, you become let down? Do you think a movie version can ever live up to a play or book?

19 comments :

  1. thanks for the review, I've been on the fence about this one. I've never seen the play, so maybe it won't be as disappointing, but I'm still going to wait for the DVD.

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    1. Good idea. This is probably a DVD movie.

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  2. I saw the trailer and was like NO! I do NOT do scary movies! The moment I see a doll I'm like, "I'm outta here!"

    Seriously. Me = big wuss.

    Anyway, I tagged you on my blog to answer some questions about yourself :-)

    xx Rachel

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    1. Thanks Rachel! I love tag. :) This one was more hey what's that? Wait for it, wait for it, oh it's just a doll. Not as scary as other horror movies, but still enough to make you jump.

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  3. Bummer that you didn't like it. :( This does happen, a lot. Priest was one that I was a bit let down with. I'd been a huge fan of the comic books for a long time. Same with the X-men.

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    1. Same here. I've never read the Priest comments, but the movie felt...off. X-Men is only redeemed because of my future second husband, Hugh Jackman. LOVE!

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    2. Yes indeed! Hugh makes the movie, for sure. ;) He's the only reason I kept seeing the sequels.

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  4. Oh my--I wanted to see this one, and now I'm not sure I want to! Anyway, thanks for letting us know :)

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    1. Hmm...well, Monica, I can't see spending the theater admission price, but perhaps a matinee? Otherwise, wait for DVD.

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  5. I haven't seen the play, but I tend to do horribly with scary movies so I usually avoid them anyway. I'm sure I'd be scared even if you weren't, mostly because I'm easily frightened. Ha! Thanks for the review!

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    1. LOL. No worries, Carolina. Scary flicks aren't for everyone. I'm also a big sucker for Disney and animated films. Watching Tangled even now. :D

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  6. Hmmm, disappointing. To be honest, I've never been a Radcliffe fan, from Potter 1. He's cute and has become less terrible, but mostly I'm sorry the movie turned out less than you'd hoped.

    Sarah Allen
    (my creative writing blog)

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    1. Thanks Sarah. It stinks when it doesn't live up to the hype.

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  7. It's funny because I can read horror books and have enjoyed several, but I'm a big chicken when it comes to the movies. Give me a bunch of guys in tights with superpowers blowing everything up to kingdom come, over creepy haunted houses, talking dolls and spirits any day!

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    1. I'm actually the opposite. I find horror books much more frightening than movies, because my imagination conjures up worse things than anything I'd see on screen. But, I'm with you on the guys in tights. :)

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  8. This has happened MANY times. I do have a movie, The Notebook, that I saw the movie and I've never read the book because I'm afraid it will ruin the movie for me.

    I'd love to go to London to see the play. If only...

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    1. I adore The Notebook, and I've never read the book either. Movie was so well done!

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  9. How sad! I have built up a movie like that too. It was the Lightening Thief. I couldn't wait. It was enjoyable but nothing like the book, and certainly not worthy of Rick Riordan's work.

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    1. Oh Lisa you just reminded me to add that book to my GR TBR list. I've been meaning to do it for awhile and always forget! Thanks! :)

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