“The Woman in Black” is Daniel Radcliffe’s first movie since the conclusion of the iconic Harry Potter films, and in all honesty, this movie probably won’t be remembered for much more than that.
Set in the early 1900s in England, Radcliffe stars as a young lawyer, Arthur Kipps, who is struggling to stay afloat.
He is assigned a strange new job that he has to complete that involves getting closing signatures on an old house in order to have income.
The people in this new town are very suspicious and unwelcoming, but Kipps feels that he must stay and finish the work.
Luckily, he is befriended by Sam Daily (Ciarán Hinds, the second man to play Dumbledore in the Harry Potter series) and his wife, who are the wealthiest folks in town.
He soon finds that there are strange things going on that he was never told about. Children in the area have been systematically committing suicide, and it seems to have something to do with the house.
This is a classic horror movie through and through. Rather than blood and violence, this film relies mainly on suspense, mystery and creepy imagery for its scares.
The tension and magnitude of the creepiness escalates throughout the film. This formula works fairly well, but it becomes predictable and boring. Overall, the horror aspect of the film is rather ordinary and standard to the genre.
If the filmmakers had emphasized the mystery, thriller and period piece genres present in the film, this movie could have really stood out. The atmosphere was already very spooky without the gross dolls, creepy children and grotesque images. Without the stereotypical supernatural spookiness this could have been a very exciting mystery movie.
The best part of the film, by far, is Radcliffe’s superb performance. He finds a great balance between the typical underacting and overacting that plague the horror genre. His character is realistic and very believable.
Hopefully, things only get better from here for Radcliffe’s acting career, as well as the movies he is cast in.
Rating: 1 1/2 stars out of 5