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Darkness Falls Review

By Shawn McKenzie 01/22/2003

Have you ever seen a movie so bad that you wanted to walk out of the theater?  Have you ever seen a movie so bad that people were laughing at the action on the screen…and it wasn’t a comedy?  I experienced both when I went to see Darkness Falls (no, I didn’t walk out, but I so wanted to.)


Formerly titled The Tooth Fairy, it had an interesting concept.  According to the back-story, about 150 years ago, there lived a nice old lady named Matilda Dixon who lived in a lighthouse in the town of Darkness Falls.  As the baby teeth of the town’s children started to fall out, she gave them a gold coin in exchange for their teeth.  Eventually she becomes known as the Tooth Fairy.  One day, Matilda is badly burned when the lighthouse catches fire.  The burns were so bad that she had to wear a porcelain mask to cover up her disfigured face, and she could only come out at night because the sunlight caused pain on her burned skin.  When two young boys end up missing, Matilda is blamed, and she sentenced to hanging.  However, before she is hanged, she puts a curse on the town that had abandoned her, and vowed to take out her revenge.  Anyone lost a tooth and saw her spirit would be stalked and killed, along with anyone around him or her.  That is the first two minutes of the movie.


Now we move on to the brainless 73 minutes remaining.  A 10-year-old boy named Kyle Walsh (Joshua Anderson) has just lost his last baby tooth.  Caitlin “Cat” Greene (Emily Browning), a girl that Kyle likes, visits him in his room.  He asks her to a school dance, which she accepts, and gives him his first kiss.  That night, as Kyle lies in his bed, he hears weird noises and shadows spin around him, so he runs out of the room.  His mother (Rebecca McCauley) thinks it is all in Kyle’s imagination, but she makes the mistake of going into the dark room and gets killed by the Tooth Fairy.  Everyone thinks Kyle did it, so he is institutionalized, and then later sent to a foster home during his teen years.


Twelve years later, Cat (Emma Caulfield), now an adult, is in the hospital caring for her little brother Michael (Lee Cormie.)  Michael had recently lost his last baby tooth.  Since then, he has been stalked by the Tooth Fairy (which only he has seen, of course), and stays out of the dark so it won’t kill him.  As such, he has not slept for more than ten minutes at a time and Caitlin admits him to the local hospital.  The doctors find nothing physically wrong with him and theorize that he is suffering from “night terrors.”  Cat thinks it seems like what Kyle (Chaney Kley) went through, so she calls him and asks for his help.  Kyle has been fighting off the Tooth Fairy for years.  He comes to the hospital with a bag full of flashlights and tries to convince Michael that he will be okay.  When Cat's boyfriend, Larry (Grant Piro), takes Kyle to a bar for a drink, Kyle is taunted by Ray (Angus Sampson), one of the locals who remembers the stories about Kyle's mother's murder.  When Ray jumps Kyle in the creepy forest outside of the bar, he is grabbed by the Tooth Fairy and killed.  Kyle is arrested for Ray's murder.  A thunderstorm knocks out the town’s power and the Tooth Fairy goes on a killing spree.  Can Kyle save Cat and Michael before the Tooth Fairy kills them too?  Do I care?


This movie is stupid, predictable, and filled with so many plot holes that I’m surprised that nobody fell in one.  It made me jump a couple of times, but I think that may be because the theater volume was cranked high.  They had to do that orchestra hit every time someone made a sudden move (including the obligatory jumping cat scare.)  Every time the Tooth Fairy was going to kill someone, I knew exactly when it would happen.  I found myself saying, “cue the Tooth Fairy!”  The logic of the Tooth Fairy’s weakness baffled me.  If a flashlight hurt her, why not the flashes of lightning?  Why could she grab you on a dark stairwell so skillfully, but not in all the dark surrounding you on the other side of a flashlight?  Since this was a curse on the town of Darkness Falls, why didn’t they just move?  It boggles the mind.


The only reason I am giving Darkness Falls the extra half a peg is because of the couple of jumps and for my love of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s” Caulfield, who is wasted here.  If you go to this movie, I think you will agree with me that the Tooth Fairy is one of the dumbest horror movie villains ever created.  Don’t waste your money on this crappy movie, unless you want a few unintentional laughs!


Ratings System:


Catch this movie at the theater if you can...

Wait until it comes out on video...

Wait until it plays on HBO, Showtime, Starz, etc...

Demand your money back, even if you saw it for free!

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