There’s Nothing Harry In This Pot And That’s Okay

17 03 2012

The Woman in Black Poster

Take about your goofy titles.


My day of spawning just rolled around recently. It was good. Day out with the Vixen mostly free of children. A rare event around these parts.

We went out to eat. Nothing fancy. Had an atrocious burger at an Appleby. Not our first choice of restaurants but it had been a while and we thought, why not? It is right by the theater after all. Curse your excellent franchise placement! It wasn’t all bad though. Even a poor meal can be a source of entertainment.

But in all seriousness, you can’t cut a burger in half, arrange it end-to-end on a long roll and call it a Philly. I’m throwing a flag on that one.

But the food isn’t the really important part. The big thing was the trip to theater.

I love movies. They’re like books that you watch. There is a writer or team of writers that birth every film into being so there is a kindred sort of artistic spirit there. Storytelling is storytelling after all.

We sawThe Woman In Black. It of course, stars Daniel Radcliffe. Let me drop a brief synopsis here in case you’ve been living under a rock lately.

Courtesy of IMDB: A young lawyer travels to a remote village where he discovers the vengeful ghost of a scorned woman is terrorizing the locals.

Uh. Yeah. That sucker was brief. So how did it stack up?

Great Expectations


I’ll start by saying this: The Vixen and I had a bit of a different experience watching this. I came at the story with a fresh, untainted (tee hee!) set of expectations. I was only even dimly aware that prior to being adapted to the screen, this was a novel. And before that a play.

The Vixen on the other hand, did a little more research  then I did (Honestly I watched a trailer and called it good.) and discovered its evolution from written medium to film and consequently purchased and read the novel.

As it turns out each of the three incarnations are noticeably different. She commented at three of four junctures during that there were discrepancies. After discussing it on the car ride home, as we always do, she confessed that these differences did not get in the way of the it being a good film.

What are the differences? Read the book. Watch the movie. Try and pick them out for yourselves dear reader. That’s half the fun.

The Proteins And Tubers Of It All


Characters. They were fantastic. This is a horror film but that does not mean that you can’t have a bit of tragic comedy sewn in and boy this film served me a nice helping of it. The couple that the protagonist befriends upon his arrival in town offer up a pointed bit of humor, tragic as it may have ultimately been.

And speaking of the protagonist, Arthur – I liked him. I related to him. And bravo to the actor for not once making me think he should still be waving a wand about while uttering strange bastardizations of the Latin language. Indeed, Mr. Radcliffe can play other roles and perform admirably while doing so.

He wasn’t perfect. In fact he suffered a great torment that made me think a bit of the animated film, UP.My only complaint (small as it is) was the same as it was in both films. I get that something tragic happened to the guy. Yes, I acknowledge that it is very sad. However, I realized it was sad when we were reminded of it ten minutes ago. Life sucks. We get it. More ghosty please.

And that takes me to what this film did very well. I can honestly say this was the most suspenseful movie I’ve watched in sometime. A lot of horror films have an excellent build up to finally revealing that oh-so-frightening ghost/killer/plague/insert-other-terrifying-crap-here. But after the initial reveal, it immediately starts to lose its luster. We know what the horror is and it remains fairly unchanging.

In this case the ghost delivers an excellent opening shock and then keeps coming back for more. After the initial suspense was built, the mostly unseen force maintained a tight grip on it and kept it high. I could have crushed a full can of coke with the tension in the room. I’m thinking the kids who sat in front of us left a bit of fear-urine behind when they exited the theater.

So What’s That Mean?


I am officially calling this one a must see. Capable actors, offering up a different spin on an old tale that asserts itself as an excellent contender for the top shelf of my movie rack. This is a film that I will watch again and again. Once it hits DVD. It is on. It is on like an Italian-Plumber-Hating Primate.




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