Movie review: The Woman in Black (2012)

The Woman in Black (2012)

Synopsis: A lawyer still grieving the death of his wife has to travel to an isolated town where the locals are terrified of a vengeful ghost with a penchant for killing children.

Director: James Watkins

Starring: Daniel Radcliffe, Ciaran Hinds

Review: The story of a grieving husband, separated from his family due to work and sent to a strange village filled with untrusting and unwelcoming locals. Is his grief causing him to see the ghosts that torment the town and who will be the next victim of the child-murdering ‘Woman In Black’.

Daniel Radcliffe, in his first major role post Harry Potter, plays the lead Arthur Kipps. I have to be honest, I never thought much of Radcliffe’s acting ability in the Harry Potter franchise and always felt that Emma Watson and the fabulous Rupert Grint acted magical rings around him and to an extent Radcliffe is out of his depth with this material. His inability to convey the emotions necessary for the depressed Kipps is obvious but luckily the solid cast and decent story covers for him.

I love a good horror story and I thought that I was too jaded to be actually scared but there were a number of points in this when I was genuinely jumping out of my seat. The cinematography was stunning and the eerie settings conveyed the mood better than Redciffe at points. What an advertisement for tourism to the UK. My only other complaint was the occasional slip into modern vernacular. I think Jane Goldsmith is an incredible screenwriter but she didn’t fully immerse the characters into the time, giving the movie an unbalanced feel. However, despite these minor failings, I loved this movie and look forward to the Blu-Ray release.

In conclusion, I think it’s fabulous that Hammer has begun creating horror movies once more and this one is sure to sit well next to their other classics.

Throw back Thursday: Fox Spirit Does Exe-Con (June 2014)

Aunty Fox, @VampiricChicken and I went to the inaugural Exe-Con, held in Exeter in June 2014. It was a fun event with local traders as well as larger businesses. Coupled with a lot of cosplay, books, comics and more it was a great event. Plus, we spread the foxy word and sold a lot of books, including launching my collection of short stories, ‘Weird Wild‘! I’m happy to say the events grown since then so am sure we’ll return to it next time. In the meantime, you can buy all Fox Spirit titles here.

Check out some of our pics from the day:

Movie review: Murder Party (2007)

murder_party_xlgSynopsis: A lonely man finds an invitation to a Halloween Party with a difference.

Director: Jeremy Saulnier

Starring: Chris Sharp, Kate Portfield, Alex Barnett

Review: I love a good independent horror movie. They seem to push the boundaries which some mainstream movies don’t and often achieve more (more scares, story, thrills and more) on a smaller budget. The film sees loner Christopher find an invitation. Deciding he’d rather spend Halloween at a party than home with his cat, Christopher makes himself a cardboard knights costume, some pumpkin bread and sets off to party. However, it’s not the party he expected as he is greeted by a group of ‘artistes’ who discuss the most creative manner in which to kill Christopher.

Considering this movie was shot with a very minimal (if any) budget, the quality of the acting and the special effects is very good. There are lots of flashes of humour as the narcissistic group try to cover up a murder and compete for an art grant from the mysterious Alexander. I especially liked the conversations about food.

The characters are well defined and little phrases or gestures do more to flesh out the characters than excessive dialogue. It’s original in its delivery with unexpected twists and turns. Perhaps not a classic but a solid foundation for future work by the writer/director and cast.