This hit thriller teams Anna Paquin (X-MEN) with Lena Olin (HOLLYWOOD HOMICIDE, CHOCOLAT) and Iain Glen (RESIDENT EVIL: APOCALYPSE, LARA CROFT: TOMBRAIDER) as a family whose life forever changes when they move into a new h... more »ome with an ancient secret! Not long after Regina (Paquin) begins living in her family?s remote country estate, she learns that there?s something horribly disturbing about the old place. Even as her parents dismiss her concerns, strange things begin to happen whenever the lights go out. Soon Regina realizes that a series of escalating supernatural events will unleash the full evil that resides in their house!« less
Colette B. from BURNSVILLE, NC Reviewed on 10/19/2009...
Great Movie! It made me a little afraid to be in the dark.
0 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Spanish Occult Thriller: Stylish Images & Incredible Story
Tsuyoshi | Kyoto, Japan | 12/14/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"'Darkness' is a Spanish film made back in 2002, with the cast -- Anna Paquin, Lena Olin, Iain Glen, Fele Martinez, and Giancarlo Giannini. The Spanish director Jaume Balaguero may be remembered with his previous film 'The Nameless' of which critical success led to the production of this film.
THE STORY is about an American girl Regina (Paquin), whose family moved to the suburb of a certain city in Spain. Her father (Glen) experienced nervous breakdown leading a busy life in America, and his wife (Olin) thought it best for him and the entire family to leave anything behind, and come to this quiet place with two children, Regina and her younger brother Paul (Stephen Enquist).
But one day, amid a heavy traffic jam, Regina's father starts to suffer from the disease again. And at the same time things begin to get weird. Paul starts to think someone is in the house while his daddy, once back from hospital, again acts strangely ... this time, perhaps not because of the disease. And Regina's grandfather (Giannini) seems to know something about the gloomy house where she lives, or something more.
FIRST, THE BEST THING ABOUT THE FILM is its photography by Xavi Gimenez (see the unique thriller 'Intacto'). In spite of confusing script, the cinematography of 'Darkness' stands on its own, always conveying the spooky atmosphere, created with the subtle and effective contrast between light and darkness. It is very good to convince you of the presence of the evil lurking behind the curtain.
The film's plot is good in the first half, but an unlucky coincidence does not help. As you know, the US viewers have already seen a horror film 'Darkness Falls' with which 'Darkness' shares the universal fear coming from darkess. And the origin of the darkness (or its fear) differs, the secrets of 'Darkess' is as predictable as those of the other film, and this makes a bad sign from the beginning.
And in the second half, the film, trying to surprise us more, actually becomes confusing, fraught with heavy-handed symbolism which is not difficult to interpret if you just notice they are there. Moreover, at least to the horror fans like me, the scares themselves are not effectively shown, with now cliched tricks, and the final chapter is simply unbelievable, or too 'good' (or bad) to be true.
But the most regrettable thing about 'Darkness' is the acting, which are, quite frankly, below average. Overacting all around, from Olin and Glen in particular, the film is filled with those characters yelling and shouting, all of whom you wish were gone. I finally thought -- Please, please, stop them.
Atomospheric 'Darkness' is shot with considerable visual skills, but lacks the credible acting of Nicole Kidman in 'The Others.' If you like something beautiful and different -- whatever the meaning of difference might be, this may be the one for you. Otherwise, see 'The Others' again."
Time for something relevant in regards to this movie...
James Simmons | Michigan | 12/16/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"First off, I have spent a bit of time glancing at many of the reviews on this website. I find many of them unfair and lacking evidence to state their cases. In my opinion, I just don't think that some people put the effort into understanding this movie as they should have done.
If you pay VERY close attention to the story line, the terror of it is insurmountable. The effect of the story is very conveying, weighing down on your mind and ultimately, sending a chill down your spine. Sure, this plot line may have been seen a million times before. But, in this day and age, what is original anymore?
Another set of complaints was how the cast was terrible. I will concede that the cast could have been a bit better acted. But, hey, it works. The cast's acting did nothing to draw attention away from the central story line. Sorry if all film companies can't hire actors like Sarah Michelle Gellar or anything. This is the best that they can do everyone. Cut them a little slack.
As the old saying goes, "don't judge a book by it's cover." This is very true in regards to this movie. If you just look on the surface of the movie, sure, you are going to hate it. But, if you take the time to look inwards and see the terrifying plot that lies within, I guarantee that you will find this movie rather enjoyable.
Thank you very much for your time and consideration."
Just plain bad.
Russell G. Lavoie | Portland, ME | 06/13/2005
(1 out of 5 stars)
"We rented this film because The Boogeyman was out....which turned out to be almost as bad as this one. I assumed that an Anna Paquin film would be a good one. I think she made this one to fulfill a contract. It took forever to build up to what was a very let down of a climax. It made little sense. My biggest question was, if they moved to spain, how come no one speaks spanish and there are very few spanish accents? This movie never even made me flinch. Looking back, I wish we had shut it off. I am critical of scary movies, but watched it with two friends who are are much more forgiving than I am. By the end of the first hour, we turned it into an audience participation film..."No....don't run up the stairs!"
Spoiler: Don't read further if you don't want to know the ending. Supposedly, the ghost characters can only exist in the dark. Funny how one of them impersonates another character and drives off with Anna Paquin and her little brother in the very end. They go into a dark tunnel, so we know what happens to them, but how was the ghost able to be in the light in the first place? Was there no script editor on set?"
Dont even think about it
ratroy2014 | chicago | 09/26/2006
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I made the mistake of watching this film in the theater. I was so glad i did not pay full price to see it. Would not even consider owning this masterpiece of crap."