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The Dark (2005) (2006)

Sean Bean , Maria Bello , John Fawcett  |  R |  DVD
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Sean Bean, Maria Bello, Sophie Stuckey, Abigail Stone, Maurice RoŽves
  • Directors: John Fawcett
  • Writers: Simon Maginn, Stephen Massicotte
  • Producers: Jeremy Bolt, Paul Tamasy, Paul W.S. Anderson, Robert How, Robert Kulzer
  • Format: AC-3, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: April 11, 2006
  • Run Time: 93 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000ECXWW2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #45,256 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Dark (2005)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Includes alternate ending

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

In the tradition of The Ring comes this frightening psychological thriller. In an attempt to pull her family together, New Yorker Adele (Maria Bello) travels with her young daughter Sarah to Wales to visit her father- James (Sean Bean). The morning after they arrive, Sarah mysteriously vanishes in the ocean. While they desperately search for Sarah, a guilt-ridden Adele is haunted by visions of her daughter as though Sarah is trapped somewhere inside the house. Adele soon learns of an ancient local legend of a place called The Dark- an ethereal land of the dead- and she becomes convinced that Sarah is communicating to her from The Dark. Not long after Sarah disappears, Adele and James find themselves involved with a little girl who not only bears a striking resemblance to their missing daughter, but reveals that she has retuned from the dead to show them that in order to get Sarah back, they must follow the rule: "one of the living, for one of the dead." Based on the novel "Sheep", by S

Dark is as mysterious as it is horrific, making it refreshingly eerie compared to the current wave of lackluster horror films. Dark's protagonist, Ada (Maria Bello), a heroically sly mother who aims to bring her allegedly dead daughter back to life, further clarifies director John Fawcett's affinity for femme fatales, best exemplified in his juicy feminist werewolf film, Ginger Snaps. This time mining the indestructible psychic mother-daughter bond for material, Fawcett tells the story of Ada, who brings daughter, Sarah, to Wales for a visit with husband and father, James (Sean Bean), an artist relocated to a remote seaside haunt. After Sarah becomes obsessed by a monolith carved with cryptic text about Annwyn, the pagan Welsh equivalent of purgatory, Ada predicts her daughter's fall off a cliff in a nearby pasture. Search parties fail to locate the girl's body, so Ada heads to the local library for research, discovering that the house they live in is inhabited by the ghost of Sarah's doppelganger, Ebrill, who seeks rebirth after a similar drowning accident. Ada makes the ultimate sacrifice to rescue her daughter while Sarah's father stands idly by. Dark's plot directly relates to the classic psychological thriller, Don't Look Now, but lacks the same subtle visual beauty, instead opting for a modern primitive look. But with Welsh mythology mixed in, not to mention subplots involving a psychotic shepherd into trepanation, and a local sheep population afflicted with a suicide-inducing virus, Dark contains appealing medieval imagery, and its contemporary take on pagan self-sacrifice is sick and cultish rather than sexy and natural, as in The Wicker Man. Dark can at least be applauded for entering some intriguingly creepy territory. --Trinie Dalton

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
33 of 33 people found the following review helpful
This is a very creepy horror film that deserves comparison with some of the best of the non-exploitation and non-slasher scary flicks like The Others. The approach of the film, especially to begin with, resembles that of classics like Don't Look Now, or Picnic at Hanging Rock -- above all, the strangeness of the circumstances and the fear they invoke mirror the psychological turmoil of the characters -- and, as with those films, the hints at a deeper supernatural mystery are nicely balanced with the growing anxiety of the characters. That is true, at least, until the latter quarter of the film when it gives in to the supernatural and to the twists and turns of more mainstream scary fare and begins to seem more like, say, The Skeleton Key. Maria Bello gives her usual strong performance and, while he has less to do, Sean Bean is convincing as a distraught and loving father and estranged husband. The real star of the film, though, is the cinematographer and crew: the colors of the Welch coast are both beautiful and evocative of a deep and mythical past; the anxiety of the characters and the power of the ocean when they are looking for a drowning girl is captured by the frantic, but not shaky, movements of the camera; the look of "the dark" (you'll know it when you see it), is both subtle and believable. A worthwhile and intriguing film, that has unfortunately not received the attention it clearly deserves.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Dark Side Of Welsh Mythology May 6, 2007
That "The Dark" is largely unknown on this continent is a shame, because this is a movie that could have and should have enjoyed a vastly larger audience, and brought more mainstream viewers over into horror, without watering the film down to '97-style 'horror-lite'. The tagline is 'One Of The Living For One Of The Dead', referring to an old part of Welsh folklore where a death on this side could sometimes bring back someone from Anwyth, the afterlife in ancient Welsh beliefs. The family in "The Dark" consists of two parents who recently broke up (Sean Bean and Maria Bello) and their twelve-ish daugther Sarah, who lives with the mother in America while her father has relocated to his native Wales. During a mother-and-daughter trip to see the father, a terrible accident happens and Sarah is washed into the ocean. Not knowing if she's alive or dead, an extensive search is organized drawing on pretty well everyone from the nearby village. And as the search is ongoing, strange things start to appear and to happen, and the supernatural elements enter.

"The Dark" is well acted - with a standout performance from the perrennially under-rated Sean Bean -, well made with realistic effects and high production values, has an upper-level musical score, and is all played out against the magnificent vista of Wales's green fields, high rocky cliffs, and mighty crashing waves, the beauty of all of which can turn very threatening under the right conditions. With a powerful emotional punch on top of all that, this one's highly recommended.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Dark April 17, 2006
I was amazed to see the 2 and a half overall rating this movie got here, when I reviewed it. It deserved more than that. This movie has a dream cast Maria Bello and Sean Bean, and the locale was stunning. Adele(Bello) is trying desperately to hang on to the idea that she can resurrect her daughter (from a drowning), and is determined to follow some folklore she discovers. Her husband tries his best to dissuade her from this obsession, but far too late for she is well on her way by this time. The movie creeped me out, I watched it late at night, and was pretty tired, but it had a sense of impending doom that made it really work.
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35 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seriously Creepy Movie!!! February 22, 2006
By JBizzle
What, something attached to Paul W.S. Anderson that doesn't suck? Oh wait, he only produced it Ha! Ha! Ha! Why this didn't get a wide theatrical release, I don't know. "The Dark" is probably the best ghost story to come around in a long time, probably not since "6th Sense". The movie stars Maria Bello(why isn't she getting bigger rolls, gotta be one of the best leading ladies around right now, absolutely the stand out performance in anything she's ever done)and Sean Bean(finally showing he can do more than just bit parts). Dark is directed by John Fawcett(Ginger Snaps, another cool horror pic, this guy knows what he's doing). The story is about a mother and daughter who go to visit the father over in Europe. Turns out in the past there was a cult and massive suicide that took place on the father's property. Anyway, the daughter eventually turns up missing, and the mother suspects the events from the past have something to do with it. I won't go anymore into detail, just watch this movie, it's seriously creepy. This movie is visually stunning(I know that sounds corny, but it's true)"The Dark" has some of the best cinematography I've ever scene in a horror movie, I hope more will follow in it's footsteps. Buy this movie, you won't be disapointed
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good start, ending awful.... May 21, 2007
I picked up this horror film because it was filmed in Wales and I love looking at all the beautiful countryside. The plot is a fairly simple one: a mother(Ada) and her daughter Sara go to visit her estranged husband James (Sean Bean) in distant Wales. Bean owns a cottage by the sea formerly owned by a ruthless cult leader who instigated a mass suicide of his flock in the 50's. It comes as no surprise, that the home is haunted. When Sara turns up missing and a creepy girl Ebril shows up on the property Ada begins to search for her daughter which turns up some horrifying revelations.

Minor Spo1lers below:

At first I found The Dark very compelling. The inclusion of Welsh myth in the form of the underworld was fascinating. The girl Ebril's was intriguing. I felt the film lost steam and emotional integrity during the frequent unnecessary trepanning, and Sara's reaction to being slapped once by her mother seemed a little bit of an overreaction. Sara seemed a very level-headed girl. Also the afterlife was weird and I felt that the girl Ebril seemed hardly deserving of such punishment.

I found the ending stupid and a disappointment. It seemed almost like the filmaker had written 2 endings and couldn't decide which one he preferred.

3 stars. Good but flawed.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars First Rate Spine Chiller!
This is one hell of a first rate spine chiller!! It has everything I look for -- name cast that delivers top notch, believable performances, atmosphere (this film particularly... Read more
Published 16 hours ago by Sparrow
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great Movie.
Published 1 month ago by Freeola
3.0 out of 5 stars Rent, Don't Buy
This is Maria Bello's first film about losing her daughter (Prisoners was the second). She just can't seem to keep an eye on her kids. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Willy D. Reviewer
3.0 out of 5 stars Be Afraid of the Dark
After watching the first five minutes, I thought, "Haven't I seen this film before?" And then I realized that I hadn't. Read more
Published 9 months ago by California Dreaming
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok movie
This movie was ok. It was somewhat interesting but it did not have a lot of action so the story tended to drag.
Published 18 months ago by N. Hardison
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it when...
...I almost gave away the ending. I really enjoy the dark nature of this movie and its a thread they pull through till the end.
Published 20 months ago by Pablo Figueroa
4.0 out of 5 stars CREEPY
If you like films like the grudge, the ring, darkwater...stuff like that...Then you will enjoy this ghost story as well
Published 21 months ago by Batman
3.0 out of 5 stars It's just ok
Not really scary, but still interesting to watch. I do not think I would watch it again or recommend it as a scary movie.
Published 23 months ago by Cathy Pierce
3.0 out of 5 stars Strong film, but underwhelming conclusion
This movie is very beautiful. The natural scenery is quite lovely, and the director made sure to remind you of this fact. Read more
Published on July 16, 2012 by DaRRen
5.0 out of 5 stars the dark
this movie was great the story line was teriffic and the scenery remarkable the actors gave good performances good movie for anyone that likes the supernatural i give it a 10
Published on May 4, 2012 by larry
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