7 C
New York
Monday, November 23, 2020
Advertisement

Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (2011) Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24 (23.976Hz)
  • Audio Codec: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish
  • Region: A (Region-Locked)
  • Rating: R
  • Run Time: 99 Mins.
  • Discs: 1 (1 x Blu-ray)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • Blu-ray Release Date: January 3, 2012
  • List Price: $35.99

[amazon-product]B005TK22CU[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Don'T Be Afraid Of The Dark - Widescreen Subtitle AC3

Purchase Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:3/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(Screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG  thus are meant as a general representation of the content and do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:3/5]

A remake of the 1973 original, this 2011 update of the horror film Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark directed by Troy Nixey and co-written by Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth) is a mildly interesting haunted house story that switches the adult protagonist of the original for the young girl of this new version.

Sally (Bailee Madison) is sent to live with her father (Guy Pearce) and his new girlfriend (Katie Holmes) in their frightening new home. Sally is soon being beckoned by the raspy whispers of voices in the dark. This causes her to go investigating the house’s darker corners where she discovers strange creatures linked to the home’s violent past that want her as their own. It doesn’t take long for things to turn very bad for the lonely Sally. Meanwhile, her father and girlfriend think she is just acting out because she doesn’t like her new surroundings.

Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark is subtly scary with its gothic sense of horror, drab, overcast colors, and mournful score in minor keys, but ultimately, it is rather predictable. It plays like a melodramatic version of Gremlins meets The Others. This is certainly no Pan’s Labyrinth, but under the right conditions it is good enough to instill a sufficient amount of fright.

Video Quality

[Rating:4/5]

What a film like Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark really needs is a transfer to Blu-ray that effectively handles the dark and shadowy settings. Sony does a really good job here, despite blacks that sometimes look just a little greyish, the nuance in the dark scenes is strong and there is no issue with crush, noise, or high levels of grain. The image looks film-like with strong detail extension straight through.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4.5/5]

If you watch this film alone in the dark, it is the sound that is most likely to get the biggest rise out of you. Boy, does this DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack really engulf you in creepy sounds, from the low, raspy whispers of “Sally” to loud rattles and footsteps and the moody score. The surrounds are abundant with reverb and discrete effects, the front channels have aggressively panned sounds with wide stereo imaging, and lows are really deep. Even with all of that, the mix isn’t one that hits you with constant barrage of loud sounds, it is often subtle and eerie, showing off a wide range of dynamics.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:2/5]

This release is fairly barebones, with only one straightforward “making of” featurette in HD and concept art also in HD.

The supplements:

  • Don’t Be Afraid…Documentary (1.78:1; 1080i/60):
    • The Story
    • Blackwood’s Mansion
    • The Creatures
  • Conceptual Art Gallery (1080p/24)
  • BD-Live
  • Ultraviolet Digital Copy

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

Horror fans could certainly do a lot worse than the beautiful cinematography and often eerie moodiness of Guillermo del Toro’s update of Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark. In fact, if you watch it in the dark with the sound turned up, it’s good enough to send some chills down your spine, but it’s too predictable to become a classic or warrant many repeat viewings.

Additional Screen Captures

[amazon-product]B005TK22CU[/amazon-product]

BestBuy.com:
Don'T Be Afraid Of The Dark - Widescreen Subtitle AC3

Purchase Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark on Blu-ray at CD Universe

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:3.5/5]
The Film
[Rating:3/5]
Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]
Audio Quality
[Rating:4.5/5]
Supplemental Materials
[Rating:2/5]

Join the Discussion on Our Forum

Advertisement

Related Articles

2067 (Blu-ray Review)

With the world deforested and people dying from a deadly disease caused by synthetic oxygen, a quiet tunnel worker receives a message from the future and must save humanity in this uneven but watchable dystopian Aussie indie sci-fi thriller.

The Irishman (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray Review)

Martin Scorsese's Academy Award-nominated (Best Director) late career crime world epic gets the Criterion Collection treatment it deserves.

Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray Review)

Criterion gives us a brilliant new 4K restoration on Blu-ray of Jim Jarmusch's 1999's indie classic about a loner assassin who follows the way of the samurai.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Stay Connected

299FansLike
0FollowersFollow
0FollowersFollow
- Advertisement -

Notice of Compliance with FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 255

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR part 255 guidelines, this website hereby states that it receives free discs and other theatrical or home entertainment “screeners” and access to screening links from studios and/or PR firms, and is provided with consumer electronics devices on loan from hardware manufacturers and/or PR firms respectively for the purposes of evaluating the products and its content for editorial reviews. We receive no compensation from these companies for our opinions or for the writing of reviews or editorials.
Permission is sometimes granted to companies to quote our work and editorial reviews free of charge. Our website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid commission on sales of those products or the services we write about. Our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Latest Articles

2067 (Blu-ray Review)

With the world deforested and people dying from a deadly disease caused by synthetic oxygen, a quiet tunnel worker receives a message from the future and must save humanity in this uneven but watchable dystopian Aussie indie sci-fi thriller.

The Irishman (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray Review)

Martin Scorsese's Academy Award-nominated (Best Director) late career crime world epic gets the Criterion Collection treatment it deserves.

Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray Review)

Criterion gives us a brilliant new 4K restoration on Blu-ray of Jim Jarmusch's 1999's indie classic about a loner assassin who follows the way of the samurai.

Westworld: Season Three — The New World (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

The third season of HBO's flagship sci-fi series sends the Hosts into the real world for a somewhat disappointing eight episodes but a magnificent 4K Ultra HD release.

Bowers & Wilkins PX7 Carbon Edition Headphones (Gear Review)

Bowers & Wilkins hit the headphone market with smart-looking wireless headphones that sound as good as they look.
%d bloggers like this: