Darkness Falls

"Terrible"

Darkness Falls Review


The title Darkness Falls is incomplete. Several other things fall as this 76 minute monstrosity lumbers along, including (but not limited to) your hopes, your interest level, and finally, your eyelids.

Actually, Darkness Falls is the name of a small Maine town that's cursed by a vengeful spirit. One hundred years prior, Matilda Dixon played tooth fairy for the community's little ones. For her troubles, Dixon was hanged from the gallows and burnt to a crisp on the charge of suspicion when two children disappeared. From that point on, Dixon's ghost has haunted the youth of Darkness Falls, claiming their baby teeth in the dead of night.

Kyle Walsh (Chaney Kley) survived his encounter with this beast the night he lost his last tooth, though his mother wasn't so lucky. Accused of murder by skeptical law officers, Walsh then spent time in and out of juvenile delinquent facilities and foster homes. Twelve years later, he's called home by his ex-girlfriend, Caitlin (Emma Caulfield), because her younger brother Michael (Lee Cormie) is experiencing the same crippling night terrors Kyle suffered years before. Sounds like someone's fearin' the fairy!

Suspend your disbelief long enough (and I'm talking a transcontinental stretch), and Falls twirls a clever premise. Too bad director Jonathan Liebesman completely ignores it. Everyone from kids to adults eventually winds up at risk, whether they've lost a tooth or not. The guidelines Falls lays out are obliterated as Liebesman proceeds with the subtlety of a sledgehammer to the forehead. Imagine reels of footage shot by a cameraman with the shakes that gets edited in a blender, and you'll have a general idea of the look Liebesman achieved.

Questions raised by the film's foundation go unanswered by the irrational screenplay. For instance, why would anyone continue to live in Darkness Falls? If all the kids were being picked off by a rogue tooth fairy, wouldn't the population be zero after, say, 25 years? And if the power is out in a hospital, would the elevator still work? Well, that's just nitpicking a particularly ridiculous plot turn, but you'll find out for yourself.

Falls manages some "bump in the night" scares early on, but the thrills get cheaper and less effective as the film progresses. Instead of cowering in my seat, I was doing the math on Caulfield - who turns 30 in April - having a brother who looked to be about eight years old. Physically possible, sure, but a bit of a stretch.

Performances across the board are so flat you could pour water on this cast and a puddle would form. Grant Piro, playing Walsh's childhood rival Larry Fleishman, leads the pack in a cast of terrible actors. His lines are delivered with the sincerity of a used car salesman. Young Cormie demonstrates the inexperience that comes with age.

Blasé and lifeless, Falls works as well as a flashlight with no batteries. Did I mention it's only 76 minutes long? That's almost network TV worthy. They should charge people less to enter the theater, though anyone who willingly pays for this drivel deserves to get screwed.

See? She uses all those teeth.



Facts and Figures

Run time: 86 mins

In Theaters: Friday 24th January 2003

Box Office USA: $32.0M

Distributed by: Sony Pictures Releasing

Production compaines: Revolution Studios, Distant Corners Entertainment Group Inc., Blue Star Productions, Village Roadshow Pictures, Morningstar Films

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 1 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 9%
Fresh: 12 Rotten: 115

IMDB: 4.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Kyle Walsh, as Caitlin Greene, as Michael Greene, Grant Piro as Larry Fleishman, as Officer Matt Henry

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Party Movie Review

The Party Movie Review

Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) is on his way to becoming the new Woody Allen, which...

6 Below Movie Review

6 Below Movie Review

Based on an astonishing true survival story, this film is subtitled "Miracle on the Mountain",...

Mother Movie Review

Mother Movie Review

Darren Aronofsky doesn't make fluffy movies, and has only had one genuine misfire (2014's Noah)....

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

It's been 35 years since Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi classic, which was set in 2019....

On the Road Movie Review

On the Road Movie Review

Wolf Alice fans are likely to be rather disappointed by this hybrid documentary-drama about the...

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Borg/McEnroe Movie Review

Skilfully made by Swedish filmmaker Janus Metz (the award-winning Armadillo), this film is essentially a...

Advertisement
The Glass Castle Movie Review

The Glass Castle Movie Review

There are quite a few terrific moments in this true story, based on the memoir...

Home Again Movie Review

Home Again Movie Review

Reese Witherspoon is so likeable that she can carry even the most hackneyed of romantic...

Brimstone Movie Review

Brimstone Movie Review

An unnerving Western with a sharp female perspective, this film is a series of gruesome...

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Kingsman: The Golden Circle Movie Review

Two years ago, Kingsman: The Secret Service seemed to come out of nowhere, ruffling feathers...

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

Goodbye Christopher Robin Movie Review

This biopic about Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne may look like the usual lushly...

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.