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"DARKNESS FALLS"
(2003) (Chaney Kley, Emma Caulfield) (PG-13)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Minor Moderate Moderate *Extreme Heavy
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild Extreme Extreme None Heavy
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
None None Moderate Mild Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Horror: Residents of a small town try to avoid a vengeful spirit by staying out of the dark where she exists.
PLOT:
In the town of Darkness Falls, legend has it that the vengeful spirit of Matilda Dixon haunts the darkness. Once known as the tooth fairy to the local kids, she now supposedly arrives at night to claim any child's last baby tooth as well as anyone who's unfortunate enough to gaze upon her disfigured face. That happened to Kyle Walsh (CHANEY KLEY) who saw the spirit kill his mother some twelve years ago and he still fears the dark where the monster exists.

Now living in Las Vegas, Kyle gets a call from his childhood girlfriend, Caitlin Green (EMMA CAULFIELD), who's concerned about her younger, institutionalized brother, Michael (LEE CORMIE) who's similarly terrified of the dark. The doctors think that the boy suffered a psychotic break from lack of sleep, but Kyle knows better and returns home to help him.

Various locals, including Larry (GRANT PIRO), the attorney who's sweet on Caitlin, and Matt (SULLIVAN STAPLETON), a disbelieving cop, aren't pleased with his return. Yet, as the killings begin again and everyone tries to avoid any and all darkness, he may be their only hope to survive.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're into horror films they just might, but since this one mostly has no name stars, that will probably keep the numbers down.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For terror and horror images, and brief language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • CHANEY KLEY plays a casino worker who's still scared of the dark due to knowledge that the spirit exists there and is after him. He reluctantly returns to his hometown to help a young boy with the same problem and then helps him and his sister survive the spirit's attacks.
  • EMMA CAULFIELD plays his now grownup childhood girlfriend who's worried about her younger brother's similar fears of the dark.
  • LEE CORMIE plays her brother who's terrified of the dark due to the spirit being after him.
  • GRANT PIRO plays an attorney who's sweet on Caitlin and isn't happy that Kyle has returned to distract her. He briefly uses some profanity.
  • SULLIVAN STAPLETON plays a local cop who also isn't happy to see Kyle's return and believes he's responsible for a local man's murder.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a quick look at the content found in this horror film that's been rated PG-13. Profanity consists of at least 1 use of the "f" word, while other expletives and colorful phrases are also uttered. Viewer reaction to this film and its intended scares will wildly vary. Those with low tolerance levels for horror-based suspense and jump scenes (of which there are many), as well as very young kids, may likely find much of it rather intense. Seasoned horror fans, on the other hand, will likely only find a few scenes, if any, that come off that way.

    Violence consists of the ghostly and ghastly spirit attacking and killing various people, but most of the actual deaths are not seen (although the bloody results occasionally are). Non-lethal violence (including non-fatal attacks and some fighting) and other bloodiness are also present. Several characters have bad attitudes, some people drink and a boy sees a spirit kill his mother.

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those concerned about bright flashes of light on the screen, some of that occurs later in the film during a lightning storm. For those concerned about jumpy camera work and thus potential motion sickness, some of that occurs late in the film as well.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Larry wants to buy Kyle a beer after returning home, but Kyle says he doesn't drink (due to the prescription drugs he's taking). Larry keeps insisting, saying that one drink won't kill him (while unaware of the pills). Larry then brings beers over for the two of them in a bar where others drink.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • We see blood from young Kyle's mouth after he's lost his last baby tooth.
  • A victim of the spirit has some blood on her.
  • Young Kyle has some bloody scrapes on his face and neck.
  • Michael has several long scrapes on his arm.
  • A dead man has some blood on his face.
  • We see some photographs of that man's bloody face.
  • Michael has bloody scrapes on his arm and blood down it and his hand.
  • Caitlin has a few bloody scrapes on her arm.
  • We see the ghastly and burned face of the spirit.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Young Caitlin sneaks into young Kyle's bedroom at night and wants him to sneak off with her and others (he declines the offer).
  • A local man has a bad attitude toward Kyle and picks a fight with him.
  • Kyle steals a handgun from a sporting goods store when the clerk is away from the case.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Viewer reaction to this film and its intended scares will wildly vary. Those with low tolerance levels for horror-based suspense and jump scenes (of which there are many), as well as very young kids, may likely find much of it rather intense. Seasoned horror fans, on the other hand, will likely only find a few scenes, if any, that come off that way.
  • In addition, scenes listed under "Violence" may also be disturbing, suspenseful or scary to some viewers.
  • Young Kyle goes to bed at night, fully aware of the legend of the malevolent "tooth fairy" spirit. He then awakens during a storm and hears weird, raspy/gurgling sounds in his dark bedroom. He then sees shadows moving across the walls and we know something's in there with him. He then pulls the covers over his head and then slowly peaks out as more sounds are there. With sudden music, he suddenly sees the masked spirit in his face.
  • His mother then goes into his room to prove that nothing is there (as he tells her to stay in the light). From a distance, we see something grab and then thrash her about. We hear the sounds of violence and see that the mother is dead. Kyle hides in the bathroom behind the shower curtain and hears the sounds of the spirit moving across the attic or second floor above him and then coming down to the bathroom door. The door suddenly bursts open and we then see the spirit waiting on the wall above the door.
  • Kyle occasionally has brief visions of the spirit.
  • Kyle gets spooked when he finds himself out on dimly lit deck at night.
  • Larry and the police search the woods at night for Kyle and another man. As they do so, they hear strange sounds.
  • We hear more raspy and gurgling sounds as Michael is in bed. We then hear him scream and a nurse and Caitlin try to open the locked bathroom door behind which he's now hiding.
  • Doctors prepare to insert Michael into a pitch black sensory deprivation chamber (and the boy is scared that the spirit will kill him inside there). Knowing this, Kyle races toward the hospital to stop that, while a doctor inserts a needle into Michael's arm that causes him pain.
  • The lights go out in the town during a thunderstorm at night.
  • A cop slowly makes his way through a dark storage room with his flashlight and gun. We see a shadow move near him and he drops his flashlight that goes out. We then see the shadow move behind him and we hear gunshots and screaming.
  • Caitlin joins Michael in hiding beneath a hospital bed when they hear sounds of the spirit. The bed then starts violently shaking and jumping above them and they then flee to another dark room where we see the spirit floating near them.
  • People try to get out of an elevator that's stuck between floors before the spirit causes it to fall (and possibly sever bodies or limbs during the escape).
  • Various characters try to escape from a dark hospital and avoid the spirit (that's hovering nearby and/or swooping in for the attack) by staying in what little light is available (and before the emergency lights go out - this goes on for several minutes).
  • Two men head down the stairs of a lighthouse to fix a generator and must stay in the limited amounts of light to avoid the spirit. At the same time, the kerosene lamp carried by Caitlin and Michael is growing dimmer and we occasionally see the spirit floating about outside a window near them. Various people then try to reach the generator switch before the spirit gets them.
  • We see the ghastly and burned face of the spirit.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handguns/Shotguns: Carried and used by the local police to shoot at the malevolent spirit (with quite a bit of that occurring in one scene).
  • Kyle steals a handgun from a sporting goods store (where we see many more weapons on display) and then pulls it on Larry to try to make him turn around their car and head another direction.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "All of this over a f*cking tooth," "You left a lot of sh*t behind," "Chickensh*t," "Freak," "What the hell /are you doing back here/was that/is going on?" "Kick his ass" and "Shut up."
  • It's possible the film could inspire some kids to try to scare others (and especially younger siblings or friends who've lost a baby tooth).
  • JUMP SCENES
  • Many of the following are accompanied by sudden music in otherwise quiet scenes.
  • A shadow suddenly crosses a window and moments later, a figure is suddenly at another window.
  • Kyle suddenly sees the masked spirit right in his face.
  • Kyle suddenly grabs his mother's arm.
  • A woman suddenly sees her own reflection and then the sight of the spirit.
  • A door suddenly bursts open.
  • A guy suddenly grabs Kyle.
  • The spirit suddenly grabs a man.
  • A body suddenly falls on someone in the woods.
  • A cat suddenly yowls and runs across Caitlin's car hood.
  • Something suddenly lands on the windshield of a car that then slams into a tree.
  • A body lands on the ground.
  • A cop is suddenly slammed against some jail cell bars.
  • A person grabs another person.
  • A truck suddenly bursts through a wall.
  • A person suddenly shows up in the shot when we're expecting another visit from the spirit.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • An extreme amount of ominous and suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 1 "f" word, 6 "s" words, 5 hells, 3 asses (1 used with "hole"), 2 damns, 1 crap, 3 uses of "Jesus Christ" and 1 use each of "G-damn," "Jesus," "Oh God," "Oh Jesus" and "Oh my God" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • None.
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • A boy sees the malevolent spirit kill his mother.
  • Caitlin worries about Michael and his condition.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The tooth fairy (for younger kids who might be scared about losing teeth after seeing this).
  • Night terrors.
  • Psychoses and anti-psychotic medication.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Kyle's mother goes into his room to prove that nothing is there (as he tells her to stay in the light). From a distance, we see something grab and then thrash her about (killing her).
  • A local man has a bad attitude toward Kyle and picks a fight with him. He throws a beer onto him, then grabs Kyle by the face and shirt, and pushes him backwards. Kyle walks away, but moments later that man dives into Kyle and the two go rolling down a hill through the woods at night. That man then repeatedly punches Kyle who then hits that man several times. The spirit then suddenly flies through the air, hits that man and both are gone in a flash. Later, that dead body falls on another man.
  • Michael has bloody scrapes on his arm and blood down it and his hand (from the spirit trying to get him).
  • When Larry won't drive him to the hospital, Kyle pulls a gun on him. Something suddenly lands on their windshield and they then crash into a tree (with Kyle being thrown out through the windshield).
  • The spirit then yanks a person through the window and apparently kills him (we hear him screaming and then see his body land on the ground).
  • The police knock Kyle to the floor when they arrest him.
  • The spirit repeatedly sweeps in, grabs, attacks and apparently kills many police officers. They try shooting it (with many shots), but it's to no avail as the spirit thrashes them about and slams one back through some glass.
  • The spirit grabs, attacks and presumably kills many people as they try to escape.
  • A truck suddenly bursts through a wall.
  • The spirit yanks a person through the window of a truck. It then attacks the truck and smashes the top, etc.
  • The spirit grabs and presumably kills a man while knocking another to the floor below them.
  • The spirit grabs Caitlin and she's injured by the subsequent fall.
  • The spirit is apparently killed by a massive amount of light.
  • The spirit grabs a guy and struggles with him in the air. He then catches the creature on fire and it burns (in pain with screaming).



  • Reviewed January 21, 2003 / Posted January 24, 2003

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