Daniel Radcliffe made an incredibly surprising move by choosing this movie as his first project after his life legacy of ‘Harry Potter’.The Woman in Black’ is a decent horror film that uses old formulas that work, but at times it’s too predictable to make you loose sleep. The film has an elegance and beauty that keeps you entertain up to a certain point; fortunately the length of the film also helps it be more likeable. This film reaches close to the level of ‘The Ring’, but it will only scare those that truly believe in the supernatural and can overlook the clichés of it.
A young English lawyer, Arthur Kipps (Daniel Radcliffe), who’s trying to overcome the death of his wife is sent to a small town to sell a mansion, that holds a deadly secret and with this prove that he has what it takes to keep his job. Kipps arrives in this grey town where he is only able to make one friend, Daily (Ciarán Hinds), who doesn’t believe in the supernatural rubbish and wants to help him carry out his task. In the meantime, Kipps must fight the vengeful ghost of a woman, who will never forgive what was done to her and he must also fight the townspeople who want the outsider to go away for reasons they don’t explain to him until it’s too late.
Radcliffe carries this entire film on his shoulders and he does a good job at interpreting a man who is trying to make sense of things he doesn’t believe exist. Interestingly enough in our interview, he told me he doesn’t believe in ghosts or the supernatural, which makes me wonder even more, why take upon a project that has to do entirely with just that? To be fair his character does try to come up with a somewhat logical yet wacky solution. Although Radcliffe denies he’s not trying to escape from his ‘Harry Potter’ persona, now I’m more inclined to believe the opposite than before.
There is no doubt this film contains all the right creepy ingredients: porcelain dolls, toys that play lullabies, zombie- ghost children, lonely mansion in a secluded area, unfriendly towns people, and of course a ghost who doesn’t accept apologies and makes no exceptions. Despite that, I have to say that my experience with horror films helped me predict the outcome of some of the scenes, which takes away from it but I have to give some credit though to the weird unpredictable creepy twist and the semi unexpected ending.
For people that don’t believe in the supernatural such as myself, it is very hard to have a horror film such as this one make me loose sleep, I enjoy horror films don’t get me wrong. After all we go to the movies to see unimaginable and incredible things, but this one didn’t traumatize me to the effect of ‘The Grudge’. If you want to see a good old hunted house film, then this is the one you’ve been waiting for. If you are into more hard-core horror/violent films this one is a bit more psychological and less graphic.