The Woman in Black
Harry Potter and The Curse of the Dead Angry Old Woman
18 March 2012
Director: James Watkins
Producer: Richard Jackson / Simon Oakes / Brian Oliver
Scriptwriting: Jane Goldman / Susan Hill (novel)
Casts: Daniel Radcliffe / Ciaran Hinds / Janet McTerr
Cinematography: Tim Maurice – Jones
Editing: John Harris
Music: Marco Beltrami
Studio: Hammer Film Productions
Distributor: CBS Films
Runtime: 95 minutes
Budget: $13 million
The popularity of Daniel Radcilffe is not wasted after Harry Potter series. He already has tons of offers for more films and The Woman in Black is one of them. The studio, Hammer Films Production from England, is known as a specialist in making horror movies and this time, Susan Hill’s novel Woman in Black inspired the studio to create the big screen version. Radcliffe played as Arthur Kipps, a young attorney with a sorrow from the death of his wife. Kipps was sent to a remote village to examine an old house there. This mysterious house turned out to relate with the death of the children on the village by a strange woman in a black dress.
Radcliffe’s fans could have another title for the film, Harry Potter and The Curse of The Dead Angry Old Woman, since Harry Potter persona still strongly lies on him. His character in this movie is however not far different but without a magic wand. Just like Harry, Kipps was a brave figure but haunted by his past trauma. Radcliffe fits this character although he looks too young to be a father. It’s not a big deal though. His performance is the most significant part for the film, and he performed well. Plus, senior actor Ciaran Hinds could make himself a great companion to support Radcliffe performance.
As supernatural horror movies, The Woman in Black does not offer something new. The 19th century setting presents great artistic design, old exterior and interior properties to build up the mysticism of the house. The old house, Eel Marsh, located in a remote place far from the village thrillingly spreads the horror by itself without necessarily having to provide further description for the audience. The film carries traditional horror that relies on scary sound effect, eerie music, moving things, and ghost sightings without any visual effects. As the result, several moments could successfully make the audience scream in fear and excitement.
The plot and ending are predictable. Even so, the point of interest is on the unrevealed mystery of the woman in black. Until the credit scene, the questions about who she really is, what she wants, or when she will stop killing children remain unanswered. But who cares anyway? Daniel Radcliffe has done a good job. Well done, Harry! (Score: B-)