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Lights Out

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Lights Out, a supernatural horror film released in 2016, directed by David F. Sandberg and produced by James Wan of The Conjuring series, will have you thinking twice before turning your lights off. This chilling horror thriller has been expertly crafted to leave an indelible mark on its audience, portraying how an unseen entity can filch one's peace when the lights are out.

The film embodies a perfect blend of suspense and chills with a compelling narrative featuring lead actress Teresa Palmer, Gabriel Bateman, and Maria Bello. With an eerie yet engaging plot that never loses its momentum, Lights Out takes its viewers into the unexplored realm of nocturnal terror.

Teresa Palmer, a versatile and talented actress, plays the role of Rebecca, a young woman with her own apartment, dedicatedly pursuing her ambitions. Her performance brilliantly communicates the various underlying emotions of her disturbed past, which is intertwined with the film's supernatural theme. Rebecca is compelled to return home due to the unsettling experiences her younger brother Martin, portrayed by Gabriel Bateman, has been going through.

Bateman showcases an excellent performance as a little boy who endures terrifying moments every night. His experiences are strikingly similar to what his sister Rebecca experienced during her childhood days. Rebecca's return reveals an entity residing in their house, an entity connected to their mother, Sophie, brilliantly portrayed by Maria Bello.

Sophie, afflicted by depression, struggles with her inner demons as much as the supernatural ones that lurk within their household. Bello meticulously portrays the duality of her character - a loving mother who struggles with mental illness as she unwillingly becomes a portal for the terrifying entity. The film successfully delves into the raw and terrifying theme of mental health and its intersection with the supernatural, setting itself apart from traditional horror narratives.

The hair-raising moments truly begin when, at sundown, the entity starts to show its malevolent existence. It only appears in the dark, fading away when lights are turned on. Its target? The family. But why? That grim secret reclines in the past, bound to Rebecca and Martin's mother. The characters are faced with the terrifying predicament of staying in the light to keep the specter at bay - a task daunting in a world that is naturally predisposed to darkness half of the time.

Director David Sandberg remarkably manages to blur the line between reality and supernatural events, which makes the storyline horrifyingly enchanting. The film is enriched by its heightened suspense, escalating tension, and the encapsulating fear of darkness that is pervasive throughout the plot.

Moreover, Sandberg ensures that the film does not get trapped within the shackles of clichéd jump-scares. Instead, it underlines a continuously surfacing fear, making use of darkness as a powerful resource for building tension and suspense in the film. In addition, the film also hosts some genuinely intelligent surprises that are impactful and effective.

Cinematographer Marc Spicer further adds to the film’s appeal with the exceptional use of light and shadow to transition between safety and danger, keeping the viewers on the edge of their seats experiencing an ambience of dread.

What adds to the film's intrigue is its psychological subtext. Lights Out is not just a skin-crawling supernatural horror film, but it also subtly addresses themes of mental illness and its impact on family dynamics. It navigates between the psychological and supernatural, offering viewers a layered narrative that resonates even after the film has ended.

While the film is soaked in chilling terror, it also maintains a depictive storyline with equally gripping emotional depth and effective character development. The characters are not just staggering in fear—they are battling their emotional turmoil, conflict, and anxieties, which humanizes them, making the audience root for their survival.

In conclusion, Lights Out masterfully orchestrates a riveting narrative of a family grappling with an eerie supernatural presence that integrates numerous jump scares and chilling sequences without losing sight of its emotional core. It pushes the boundaries of traditional horror, utilizing not only phantasmagoric elements but also a poignant subtext of mental health issues. This, combined with the commendable performances of its actors and its atmospheric cinematographic techniques, makes for a thrilling and thought-provoking cinematic experience, leaving viewers with a lingering dread of darkness long after the credits roll.

Lights Out is a Horror movie released in 2016. It has a runtime of 81 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 6.3. It also holds a MetaScore of 58.

How to Watch Lights Out

Where can I stream Lights Out movie online? Lights Out is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at The Roku Channel, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Lights Out for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

David F. Sandberg
Teresa Palmer, Gabriel Bateman, Billy Burke, Maria Bello
Also directed by David F. Sandberg
Also starring Gabriel Bateman
Lights Out is available on .