5.9/10
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30 user 12 critic

Afraid of the Dark (1991)

A little boy, obsessed with blindness and violence, slowly gets trapped in his own delusions.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Frank
...
Miriam
...
Tony Dalton
...
Rose
...
Dan Burns
...
Lucy Trent
...
Locksmith / Tom Miller
Ben Keyworth ...
Lucas
...
Blind Woman
...
Basement Woman
Sheila Burrell ...
Meg
Star Acri ...
1st Girl at Wedding
Niven Boyd ...
Ice-Cream Man
Tiffany Bryant ...
Tess
Frances Cuka ...
Mrs. Dalton
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Storyline

Lucas is a little boy who's going blind. The only thing that could save his eyesight is a risky eye operation that could either fix his eyes or blind him for good. Scared, lonely and half-blind, he lets his subconscious fears and desires and grim imagination run loose. He spends a lot of his time spying on people and visiting the local graveyard and the mausoleum. He starts seeing a creepy serial killer everywhere in town, who goes after blind women and stabs them in the eyes. Lucas doesn't tell anyone about this, not even his police officer father. He also starts seeing other people, who are not blind, as if they were blind. Lucas also develops an unhealthy interest in his much older stepsister, who is about to get married and leave their family home, and becomes jealous of her husband to be. Things culminate when he sees a dog he believes to be rabid, and when his pregnant mother finally gives birth to his baby sister. Can Lucas return from the brink of sanity and what, if anything,...

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You can't escape what you can't see.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and a scene of sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

22 January 1992 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Angst vor der Dunkelheit  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Feature film directing debut for Mark Peploe. See more »

Connections

References Ghostbusters (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

Aupres de ma blonde
Traditional Music
Performed by David Shields
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User Reviews

 
Odd and creepy horror film, but ultimately disappointing...
31 October 2007 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

To better understand what the director was attempting to do, I read many of the other posts on this film after watching it--because, clearly, it was a murky way to tell a story about an odd little boy who thinks he might be going blind. Some of the explanations seem valid enough, but that still doesn't make AFRAID OF THE DARK any more than an experimental film that doesn't quite have the payoff intended.

The boy, played by BEN KEYWORTH, wears extra thick glasses and sees the world in a distorted way. It's through his vision that we perceive what's happening, although much of the action is in his mind and is not reality. That's why there are so many layers to get through if you want to enjoy the film.

Frankly, I was annoyed by some of his choices--particularly, the incident involving the dog Toby--and the only character in the story that I could fully relate to was the father, played by JAMES FOX. Well mannered, he seemed an understanding parent but was willing to put up with an awful lot of wrong and downright odd behavior from his son.

Certain elements of the film were original in concept, such as the knitting needles and how they took on a different significance in the final scene, but overall there were many moments that seemed to drag, the pace suffering from bad editing.

Not the sort of film I'd want to watch again and ultimately has to be considered a disappointment for a film that had so much potential to begin with.


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