Lights Out (2016)
When a 10 year old boy named Martin (Gabriel Bateman) can’t sleep after the death of his step-father (Billy Burke), his adult-age sister Rebecca (Teresa Palmer) intervenes in order to get him away from their unstable mother (Maria Bello) who has a history of mental illness. However, when it becomes apparent that a supernatural entity is the cause for Martin’s lack of sleep, the past is dug up to reveal that Rebecca had the same problems at his age.
Lights Out is a one trick pony. It relies on the lights off/lights on tactic to scare audiences and it does it pretty well… at times. It is only 81 minutes long so there isn’t much wiggle room for development or build up. It incorporates a decent story, but at times, I was unsure what was truly going on because the movie is that short. This is the rare occasion that I wanted the movie to be longer! I think of movies like The Ring that are 2 hours long, but have plenty of scares, eerie moments and a great story! Lights Out suffers because of lack of substance! That isn’t to say this movie is bad, but this movie could have been so much better if they added more to the back story, or if the movie had a 3rd act. Most movie endings have 3 parts, the build-up, the climax and the resolution, but Lights Out seems to have just the build-up as the climax comes and goes super fast (similar to The Conjuring 2 early this year). I would have loved to see about 15 minutes more dedicated to further explanation of the back story and about 15 minutes dedicated to the creation of the demon and maybe having Diana take another form other than just a shadow.
At the end of the day, this movie is a decent horror film that causes scares and moments of fear, but I wish something more memorable could have occurred other than a creature in the shadows. I still recommend it though. Co-starring Alicia Vela-Bailey and Alexander DiPersia.
7/10 Stars – A one trick pony with decent scares that needed to be a little longer.