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This is where I store the "extra" stuff in my head.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Don't Be Afraid of the Dark

In 1973, (I was 9 years old) there was a movie on t.v. called Don't Be Afraid of the Dark.  It starred Kim Darby as "Sally".  She and her husband inherit and  move into an old house and in the restoration process, she discovers a sealed fireplace.  Her curiousity gets the better of her,  and despite warnings from the handyman, she opens the fireplace. Soon, she hears whispering and begins seeing small, demonlike creatures around the house.  Unfortunely for her, no one else sees them.  Until it's too late!  The creatures are intent upon possessing her and taking her to the fireplace with them for eternity.  Their only weakness is light of any kind.  Eventually, they drag Sally into the fireplace with them. The scene where Sally is being dragged by her ankles by the creatures, using the flash from a camera to try to hurt them,  was engraved in my memory. This movie is the one responsible for making me afraid of the dark and it was one of those rare movies that I have never forgotten.  About a year ago, I found out through IMBD that Don't Be Afraid of the Dark was being remade, starring Katy Holmes.  I can't tell you how excited I was to hear that news!  So I went online and found a copy of the original movie from 1973 and bought it.  The one that scared me silly and made me sleep with a nightlight to this very day.  I popped it in the DVD player with goosebumps on my arms and sat down with my kids  to watch it.  Imagine my disappointment in the creatures!! They were laughable! (and believe kids were cracking up!!) The acting wasn't much better from the human actors, either.  Sally was a whimp and whined and cried her way throughout the entire story.  Nevertheless....I eagerly awaited the new version.  I was not disappointed!  In the new version, Sally is a young girl, about 8 or 9, who is sent to live with her dad and his fiance' in this ginormous old house.  She finds a basement that has been hidden and sealed shut for years and in the basement is the fireplace.  The story stays pretty much with the original, except the creatures in this one are akin to goblins or trolls.  More like evil tooth fairies, because they eat children's teeth.  Katy Holmes plays the step-mom-to-be who at first, is reluctant about becoming a mom.  However, as the story progresses, she and Sally form a bond.  Katy's character, Kim, is the heroine I hoped she would be.  She didn't lay down and give up, as Kim Darby's character did, but she stood up and fought for Sally.  As for the new creatures...all I can say is this: if I weren't already afraid of the dark, I sure would be now. 
I give it a 10+ on the MelScale!!

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