cast: Kevin Zegers, Jesse James, Rachel Skarsten, Charles Powell, and Linda Purl
director: K.C. Bascombe
86 minutes (15) 2002
High Fliers VHS rental
Also available to rent on DVD
reviewed by Mike Philbin
Nine-year-old Brian Billings is under therapy for his acute fear of the dark. Every light in the house has to be on. Every broken light has to be fixed now, Daddy, now!
Fear Of The Dark’s weedy little central premise is that the world is physically split into the light and the dark, and that the dark harbours some evil form of residents; rabid dogs, swarms of cockroaches; the torn-faced hacker/slasher who lives in the wardrobe… So, you must keep your lights on all the time, and now there’s an electrical storm brewing… need I go on? It’s a brat movie of the most heinous sort. The kid, the central character, the pivotal role in the movie is more annoying than that boy in Spielberg’s A.I. You just want to throttle that kid in his suit of lights. You look into his ever-tear-primed eyes and you want to throttle him.
I’ll be brief to spare those concerned with it too much embarrassment. My first question is where do they get these lame-ass writer/director/producer teams? I did notice lots of French-Canadian names in the credits. The special effects were mediocre and hardly ever matted in at the same contrast as the footage. It was just a bit slapdash in most shots. If this is the future of horror movies (inspired by recent box-office success story Jason Versus Freddy) there’s no hope for creativity unless it is trite formulism. What sort of mark would you give to a film that is worse in almost every way than Cherry Falls?