Are you afraid of the dark? I just saw “Lights Out” tonight and let me tell you, it gets scary. The movie starts with a cool scene that doesn’t waste any time showing you what you are in for. Within the first 5 minutes you are introduced to the “monster.” I was instantly creeped out. Unfortunatly, soon after this amazing introduction to the “Lights Out” universe, the movie starts to go through the same motions we have all come to know from watching horror movies. We meet the girl played by the beautiful Teresa Palmer. The cute guy played by Alexander DiPersa, the crazy mom, (Maria Bello) and the kid brother, played beautifully by the young Gabriel Bateman. Bateman has the best facial expressions around! When the kid is scared, you see it. (Watch HBO’s “Outcast.” This kid was made for horror (and obviously more.) He made the movie for me.
We have all seen this film before…the set up is pretty straight forward. The first act is peppered with really creepy jump scares, but the second act is where the movie shines for me. Much like “The Conjuring 2” it becomes relentless, and doesn’t stop. For the next 30 minutes, it’s nothing but “HOLY SHIT” moments. And those moments are why I go see horror movies. “Lights Out” is scary. My problem with the movie and what ruined it for me was that everything seemed to happen in the second act of the film. Director David F. Sandberg first made a short version of this film, and by the end, I felt like this was just the director’s cut of that short. It’s not a good sign when I go “That’s it?” after a movie. The ending is what makes a great film and I feel like “Lights Out” did not deliver. It felt like there was so much more that could have happened, and we were not being told the entire story. Even TV shows end with more finality than “Lights Out” did. It’s not a bad movie, but after “The Conjuring 2” it’s hard to go back. I suggest watching it at home. However, I think I will sleep with my Batman night light on tonight.