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Running Time:
1 hour, 40 minutes

Rating: R Restricted. Under 17 Requires Accompanying Adult.

Rating Explanation:
for violence and terror.

Jimmy's Buzz Guide Review:
A well-paced, old-fashioned horror thriller.

Additional Info:
Guy Pearce ... Alex Hurst
Katie Holmes ... Kim
Bailee Madison ... Sally Hurst
Jack Thompson ... Harris
Julia Blake ... Mrs. Underhill

Don't Be Afraid Of The Dark
Don't Be Afraid of the Dark  In this remake of a  1973 Movie-of-the-Week, a sad-faced young girl named Sally (Bailee Madison) is sent by her uncaring mother to live with her father Alex (Guy Pearce), who, along with his young girlfriend Kim (Katie Holmes), is renovating a long-uninhabited estate, outside Providence, Rhode Island, in hopes of selling it at a profit.

Shortly after arriving at the place, Sally uncovers a hitherto-unknown basement, where little gargoyles are waiting behind a grating, occupying a cavern that apparently descends to the very center of the earth. But soon they’re out and about, whispering to Sally, alternately enticing and threatening her. Eventually Kim and Alex are persuaded of their existence, and in time the trio is trying to survive the creatures’ onslaught and escape intact.

Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark could have worked as a simple chiller if producer Guillermo del Toro would have directed it himself but first time director Troy Nixey proves to be more journeyman than artist, although he does employ the power of suggestion in the early reels by showing the creatures only in snatches, forcing us to imagine what they might be, but after giving us a good look about halfway through, he uses them far too much. And generally while his work hits the right notes and is well paced and scary, it lacks the visual poetry needed to make the movie really memorable.

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