Review: Lights Out

Lights Out

Everyone has been waiting for Lights Out. Everyone. It looks very different in the trailers than other more recent horror films, showing some promise that it will stray from the recent run of disappointing and predictable jump-scare type films. With it set to release alongside Star Trek Beyond and Ice Age: Collision Course, let’s take a look the pros and cons of this flick and how it might fare at the box office this weekend.

The single biggest pro for this film is that it is only 79 minutes long. To be fair, the first five minutes of it on the screen had me hooked, and I was pretty scared. I spent the rest of the 74 remaining minutes wondering if it wouldn’t have been better served as a video game story. Short list of pros, I know.

So let’s move on to the cons, shall we? It is exactly like any other jump-scare horror movie you’ve seen. Fear of the dark and what may be lurking around the corner, under the bed, or behind that closed door is exploited to the point of being completely ridiculous. Add to that the mediocre acting and predictable dialogue between estranged family members that still care about each other after so much time has passed, and you have a movie that might still scare a ten year old. Maybe.

Lights Out

Lights Out is their missed opportunity to do something amazing with such a simple concept. The whole film seemed to struggle with trying to seem like it wasn’t trying too hard, while making up awful backstories for certain characters or events that made it seem like they were trying too hard. With only a 5 million dollar budget, that may be a good reason why. I may be speculating, but it seems to have been made just to bring in some extra cash.

Should you still go see this? If you are the kind of person that loves scary movies indiscriminately, knock yourself out. There are plenty of people out there who will find this movie worth the in-theater watch. But if you are looking for something that really gets under your skin like only a truly dark and original horror film can, you will leave the theater empty, and maybe even a little angry at having wasted your time.

Grade: D

Kelsey loves critiquing movies, writing screenplays, and reading as many books as she can get her hands on. She finds the creative world (in its many, many forms) fascinating and takes pleasure in sharing as much of it as she can with her two daughters. Residing in southern California, she is in the prime part of the country to see all there is to see artistically and to be inspired to inspire others that same way.