Lights Out Movie Review
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Lights Out is a horror film directed by David F. Sandberg and produced by James Wan. The movie follows the story of a family who are haunted by a mysterious entity that only appears in darkness.

The premise of the movie is intriguing, with its main fear coming from the dark, which is something that most people can relate to. The film’s cinematography and sound design work together to create an eerie atmosphere that will keep you on the edge of your seat throughout.

It also features strong performances from its cast, including Maria Bello, Teresa Palmer, and Gabriel Bateman. As a horror fan, I was excited to see how Lights Out would stand up against other contemporary horror movies.

In this review, I will explore the strengths and weaknesses of the film, as well as its ability to scare audiences.

Plot Synopsis

Lights Out is a horror film directed by David F. Sandberg, which follows the story of a family haunted by a malevolent entity that only appears in the dark.

The film’s premise revolves around the character development of its main protagonists, especially Rebecca (Teresa Palmer), as they try to overcome their fears and confront the supernatural threat that plagues their household.

The movie’s plot is structured around several jump scares and tense moments that keep the audience on edge throughout.

While it may seem like a typical horror flick at first glance, Lights Out has a twist ending that adds depth to its storyline and elevates it from being just another generic entry in the genre.

Furthermore, the film’s commitment to character development makes viewers empathize with its cast of characters and invest emotionally in their struggles against an unseen evil force.

Cinematography And Sound Design

The cinematography and sound design in ‘Lights Out’ are both significant elements that contribute to the overall atmosphere of the film. The use of lighting, in particular, plays a crucial role in creating tension and suspense. The filmmakers effectively utilize shadows and darkness to create an ominous and foreboding ambiance that keeps the audience on edge throughout the entire movie.

Moreover, the use of practical lighting effects, such as flickering lights and sudden blackouts, adds an additional layer of dread to the story.

The sound design is equally well-executed, with a variety of sound effects used to heighten tension at key moments. The creaking of floorboards or doors opening by themselves adds a sense of impending doom, while sudden loud noises startle viewers out of their seats.

A particularly effective use of sound can be seen when Diana appears on screen; her distinctive rasping breath creates an eerie presence that is both terrifying and unforgettable.

Overall, the combination of expertly crafted visuals and audio make ‘Lights Out’ a worthy addition to any horror fan’s collection.

Cast Performances

In terms of cast performances, Lights Out is a mixed bag. While some actors deliver strong and convincing performances, others fall short in bringing depth to their characters.

Teresa Palmer, who plays the lead protagonist Rebecca, delivers a solid performance that effectively conveys her character’s fear and determination. She manages to balance vulnerability with strength, making her a relatable and engaging character. Gabriel Bateman also does an excellent job portraying Rebecca’s younger brother Martin, effectively conveying his terror at the hands of the malevolent entity that haunts him.

However, other members of the cast fall short in terms of character development and on screen chemistry. Maria Bello’s portrayal of Sophie, Rebecca and Martin’s mother, lacks nuance and fails to evoke sympathy from the audience. Alexander DiPersia’s performance as Rebecca’s boyfriend Bret comes off as wooden and unconvincing. The lack of chemistry between Palmer and DiPersia is palpable, which detracts from the emotional weight of certain scenes.

The importance of effective character development in horror films

The role of on-screen chemistry in creating believable relationships between characters

How mediocre performances can detract from an otherwise well-crafted film

Overall, while Lights Out succeeds in its cinematography and sound design, it falls short in terms of consistent cast performances. While some actors deliver strong performances that elevate the film, others fail to bring depth to their characters or create convincing relationships with co-stars. Nevertheless, Lights Out is still worth watching for its effective scares and impressive technical aspects.

Comparison To Other Horror Movies

The horror genre has always been a challenging one to master, with many filmmakers struggling to create works that are both terrifying and thought-provoking.

When it comes to Lights Out, the film does an impressive job of exploring themes that are prevalent in other horror movies such as mental illness, family relationships, and supernatural entities. While some may argue that the movie is not particularly original in this regard, it deserves recognition for its effective execution.

In terms of box office success, Lights Out was able to generate $148.9 million against a budget of only $5 million. This achievement is a testament to the film’s ability to attract audiences and keep them engaged throughout its runtime. It also further solidifies the horror genre’s place as a profitable industry in Hollywood.

Overall, while Lights Out may not be groundbreaking in terms of its themes or storytelling techniques, it still manages to deliver a satisfying viewing experience for horror fans and casual moviegoers alike.

Scare Factor And Overall Impressions

The scare factor of Lights Out is largely dependent on its use of jump scares. The film relies heavily on this technique to create fear and tension, with sudden loud noises and unexpected appearances from the ghostly antagonist. While effective in eliciting a physical reaction from the audience, this approach lacks subtlety and depth. The overreliance on jump scares makes the film feel predictable and one-dimensional, failing to sustain a sense of dread throughout.

However, where Lights Out excels is in its atmospheric horror. The cinematography and sound design work together seamlessly to create an eerie atmosphere that permeates each scene. The use of darkness and shadows adds to the overall feeling of unease, creating a sense that danger could be lurking around any corner.

It is here where the film shines brightest, offering moments of genuine creepiness that leave a lasting impression on the viewer. Overall, while Lights Out falls short in its scare tactics, it still manages to deliver a satisfying dose of atmospheric horror that makes it worth watching for fans of the genre.


Lights Out is a horror movie that follows the story of Rebecca, who discovers that her younger brother Martin is being haunted by a malevolent entity that can only appear in the dark. As she confronts the terrifying figure from her own childhood, Rebecca realizes that this evil entity is tied to her family’s past and must be stopped before it claims another victim.

The cinematography and sound design in Lights Out are both outstanding. The use of darkness and light creates an eerie atmosphere, and the sound effects are perfectly timed to make viewers jump out of their seats.

The cast performances are also noteworthy, with Teresa Palmer delivering a convincing portrayal of a woman grappling with her own fears and demons.

While Lights Out may not be the most original horror movie, it does successfully generate scares through its well-crafted visuals and soundscape. The comparison to other horror movies such as The Babadook or It Follows may be drawn but it still stands out on its own for its effective use of darkness as a mechanism for fear.

Overall, Lights Out is an enjoyable film for those looking for a good scare.

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