The Darkness – USA, 2014 – overview and reviews

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‘Evil comes home’

The Darkness – formerly 6 Miranda Drive – is a 2014 American supernatural horror feature film directed by Greg McLean (Wolf Creek) from a screenplay co-written with Shane Krause and Shayne Armstrong (Bait). Blumhouse Productions, Chapter One Films and EMU Creek Pictures produced the film.

As a family returns home from vacation at the Grand Canyon, they innocently bring home a supernatural force that preys off their own fears and vulnerabilities, threatening to destroy them from within, while consuming their lives with terrifying consequences…

On March 5, 2014, director Greg McLean said, “The story is based on a true story that was relayed to me first-hand many years ago about an actual haunting.

Filming began in April 2014 in Los Angeles with a reported budget of $5 million and ended in May the same year.

The film was belatedly released in the US on May 13, 2016, by BH Tilt in coordination with High Top Releasing.

6 Miranda Dr.

Main cast:

Kevin Bacon (Tremors; Flatliners; Stir of Echoes), Radha Mitchell (Silent Hill), David Mazouz (Gotham), Lucy Fry (Vampire Academy), Matt Walsh and Jennifer Morrison.

Reviews:

” … a dumbass, inexpensive horror flick which means anything real is thrown away so that poorly rendered CG ghosts can hover about and smash up windows. The final third of the film goes haywire with portals, talismans and chanting, none of it particularly scary or even interesting. When you find yourself yearning for the thorough world-building of the Insidious franchise, you know you are in trouble.” Jordan Hoffman, The Guardian

” … a horror film made up of long stretches of time in which nothing much of anything happens, and is only occasionally punctuated by brief bursts of pure, concentrated boredom. There are times when it feels as if the producers challenged themselves to see how little it needed and still meet the legal definition of a movie.” Peter Sobczynski, RogerEbert.com

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“Greg McLean, the Australian director of the Wolf Creek movies, is a capable enough filmmaker, and he has a talented cast that brings more to the drama than other such films, but it’s hard not to feel like they’re being wasted on such weak material … The Darkness offers very few new scares, mainly because it’s so haunted by the ghosts of far better horror movies.” Edward Douglas, New York Daily News

“The filmmaker [McLean] seems handcuffed by the strictures of über-producer Jason Blum, the horror genre’s new William Castle, which usually require a PG-13 rating and an abundance of predictable fake scares accompanied by bludgeoning stomps and shrieks on the soundtrack. This enterprise is so listless that one can’t even work up a proper head of self-righteous steam over the spooky Native American clichés that drive the plot.” Chuck Bowen, Slant

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“It’s vaguely endearing to watch Bacon and Mitchell actually try to act their way through the film’s family drama, as though it weren’t a perfunctory pretext to jump scares. The Darkness needs their chops. It needs anything to distract horror fans from the fact that there’s nothing new here—not the pets that can smell the trouble, not the doorway to the other side, not the expert exorcist type consulted in act three.” A.A. Dowd, A.V. Club

The Darkness is the sort of horror movie where after the family leaves the haunted house they go back to settle things once and for all… and opt to do so at night. It is the sort of movie where the family bring in experts to help them break the curse but then the experts prove entirely irrelevant. In short, The Darkness offers little to differentiate itself from any number of other horror films and sometimes even from The Brady Bunch.” Josh Lasser, IGN

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” … leads to slow, pensive walking and sudden startles. And boredom and disbelief on our part . I mean really, what could have convinced Bacon and Mitchell to sign up for this boring mess? To quote Dana Carvey’s Church Lady, “Could it be… Satan?” Jim Judy, Screen It

Cast and characters:

  • Kevin Bacon as Peter Taylor
  • Radha Mitchell as Bronny Taylor
  • David Mazouz as Michael Taylor
  • Lucy Fry as Stephanie Taylor
  • Matt Walsh as Gary Carter
  • Jennifer Morrison as Joy Carter
  • Parker Mack as Andrew Carter
  • Ming-Na Wen
  • Trian Long-Smith as Sammy Levin
  • Paul Reiser
  • Tara Lynne Barr as Kat
  • Judith McConnell as Trish
  • Krista Marie Yu as Tasha
  • A.J. Tannen as H. Quinlan

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