Cert: 15 Runtime: 81 mins Director: David F.Sandberg Cast: Teresa Palmer, Gabriel Bateman, Alexander DiPersia and Billy Burke
If you don’t stop… I’LL SHOW YOU WHERE I PUT YOUR FATHER
David F.Sandberg created a short for Lights Out back in 2013 and due to it’s popularity he managed to get it made into a feature film. Producing is the great James Wan, with such a prestigious name on board Lights Out had to be seen. So what is Lights Out about? Following the unexplained death of his factory owner father Paul (Billy Burke), 10-year-old Martin (Gabriel Bateman) starts to experience terrifying visions whenever the lights are switched off. This brings home his older sister Rebecca (Teresa Palmer), who moved out because she could no longer cope with their hallucination-plagued, mentally unstable mother, Sophie (Maria Bello). Frazzled Martin tells Rebecca that Sophie has been communicating with someone named Diana, who lives in the dark. Recognising the threat this terrifying and malevolent entity poses to the family, Rebecca realises that she must unlock and confront the truth hidden in her mother’s past.
Director’s Sandberg’s first feature film is a decent enough horror picture. The movie doesn’t rely too heavily on cheap jump scares, but instead goes for more thought out ones, though the creepiness of the creature can become a bit tiring as the movie goes along, since we’re explained the concept of monster from the get-go, so any mysteries that are revealed about its origins are more like interesting tidbits, that aren’t anything really revelatory or shocking. The movie also does well to play against typical horror tropes. Here the boyfriend character isn’t just a accessory to the protagonist to just end up getting needlessly slaughtered early on, like in other pictures. Alexander DiPersia as Bret, Rebecca’s boyfriend, is supportive, and actually helpful when things get awry. A refreshing change of pace, all things considered. The concept of “Light’s Out” may have been better realised in short form, but David F. Sandberg is a director of great potential, especially if he can make more interesting ideas like with this film.