Lights Out Review (Spoilers)

When I went in to my screening there was a guy snoring really loudly through half the movie which took away a lot of my ability to get into the movie. After he was removed by management it was easier to pay attention. However the main problem I had with this movie was there was too much backstory to Diana. Like to a point that it made you think too hard about what she was instead of just accepting that she was a monster.

You see back in the day with a movie like The Ring, you just kind of accepted the fact that at some point Samara was a real girl (or if you want to go with the Japanese version Sadako) who had a bad life and some kind of supernatural ability. Also Samara’s motive wasn’t very clear until the end. She wasn’t shown nearly as much on screen. A lot of it was implied. You only actually saw her come out of the TV once even though more than one person died that way. The rest of the movie was suspense, atmosphere, and good misdirection with story telling until the end. The twist at the end was done well too. You’d think (as with any other ghost story) the “ghost” just wants her body to be found and put to rest. Samara just wanted to spread her message of death around. That’s it. That’s the end. It was also far more universal. As in literally anyone could watch these tapes and potentially be killed by her if they didn’t know the trick.

Diana was (Spoilers) a real girl but also not? And she only seemed to be attached to one woman and her family. Even at the beginning the man she was after was the woman’s (Sophie) husband. But Diana didn’t attack Esther even though she very well could have because it wouldn’t have been that hard. Then I guess if Sophie took her medication Diana would go away but also Diana was able to prevent her from taking her medication? And Diana listened to Sophie…kinda? Also it doesn’t make sense that Sophie killing herself would get rid of Diana. When she was passed out Diana was still around but it seems that logically Sophie would have to be awake because Diana lived through her. Right?

I didn’t think the movie was totally awful I think it had a lot of redeeming qualities and creep factors. I think it was definitely worth paying for in the theater. I just also think that they gave Diana far too much backstory to a point where you had to overly consider if she was real or if she was fake and how she was real. Things like that. With a movie like The Ring (or even Babadook from a few years ago) they weren’t overly in your face about what either thing was. There were vague hints and somewhat of a backstory but nothing to this level. Having the main character (Rebecca) literally going through boxes to find this stuff. She just happens to find an audio tape of what exactly happened to Diana. I mean lined up perfectly to the time where Diana says she needs Sophie and then her death. It’s too obvious. When Rachel found the video tape in The Ring all it was, was Samara saying how Daddy didn’t like her, he liked the horses and he wanted her to go away. Then it cuts out right at that point. Just enough that you kind of get the sense that Samara is bad but not enough to completely demonize her.

This movie was confusing. There was also no need to attach her to a clearly mentally ill woman either. It would have been just as scary if Diana was attached to a doctor, a random woman/man, or even some kind of object that she liked. Throwing in the manic depressive and possibly delusional mother just made things more complicated. You leave there wondering if Diana is real, or just a metaphor for mental illness and delusion. It was visually stunning, suspenseful, creepy, and the acting we really good. I just am unsure how much I liked it vs how much it left me trying to figure out what Diana was and if she was real or not. In this case they should have basically given her no back story and just let a monster be a monster. Fear of the dark alone would have sold this horror story without an intense backstory about “OMG insane asylum” or whatever.

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