Thus revealed, the creature buried its nose in the tire-tilled soil...
August 29, 2019
Not-so Scary Stories

Earlier this week I saw Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. Admittedly I did not actually expect it to be scary (and it wasn't), but I also did not expect it to be as lame as it was. Irritating characters, dialogue that was 90% needless exposition, and "scares" detached from any context that might have made them more compelling does not make for good viewing.

I'm also highly disappointed in some of the choices that were made for this film -- namely the decision not to make it an anthology. I might be a little biased here -- I love horror anthology flicks -- but part of that bias probably owes to the ease of making a relatively effective horror anthology. (Of the 4-5 stories in any anthology film, only one of them needs to be memorable for the movie to be worth watching, and all but the crappiest flicks can usually pull that off.) Here, however, we had a film expressly based on a collection of scary stories, and for some reason they made it about a group of annoying teens and a ghost that kills by writing stories in its Death Note. It was kinda like a weak horror remake of "Ghostwriter", only nowhere near as enjoyable as actual Ghostwriter (to say nothing of a proper horror remake of Ghostwriter, which now I think I need to see).

I did jump a few times during the movie, though. The theater was fairly empty (not surprising for a 10:40am showing on a Tuesday), but seated four seats away on my right was this old black man with a quiet voice that would chill Tony Todd's blood. So every time he grunted or mumbled something to himself, icy fingers ran down my back and compelled me to jerk my head in his direction. At one point -- when a character onscreen was looking for and failing to locate the monster hunting him at the time -- the old man rasped, "She's on top of you!" and I only just managed to avoid swinging my eyes to the ceiling and prematurely shrieking in fear of what I would discover.

Anyway -- Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark was my first official horror movie (in theaters) of the 2019 Halloween season. Let's hope the films to come are much, much better.

-posted by Wes | 12:08 pm | Comments (0)
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