Lights Out | Chicago Reader

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Rated PG-13 · 81 minutes · 2016

Horror, Thriller
Swedish director David F. Sandberg expands his 2013 short into a brisk, studio-glossy feature that's predictable and heavily reliant on jump scares but spooky good fun nonetheless. The supernatural entity stalking the grungy, twentysomething heroine (Teresa Palmer) and her precocious little brother (Gabriel Bateman) has an obvious Achilles heel: it's allergic to light of any kind, so it hunts in darkness, waiting for the opportune moment to strike. The creature's motivation is easily sussed out too, because the siblings' mother (Maria Bello), a mentally ill widow who calls the creature her "friend," has a dossier of files and cassette tapes in her library for the daughter to drop by and decipher (à la Naomi Watts in The Ring). Sandberg clings to almost every genre convention imaginable, though apparently this was intentional and the actors are in on the joke; Bello's histrionic line readings drip with camp.
Official Site:
Director: David Sandberg
Producer: James Wan, Lawrence Grey, Eric Heisserer, Walter Hamada, Dave Neustadter, Richard Brener, Steven Mnuchin, Michael Clear, Jack Murray and Ben Everard
Cast: Teresa Palmer, Gabriel Bateman, Alexander DiPersia, Billy Burke, Maria Bello, Alicia Vela-Bailey, Andi Osho, Rolando Boyce, Maria Russell, Elizabeth Pan, Lotta Losten, Amiah Miller, Ava Cantrell and Emily Lind

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