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Dahlia Williams and her daughter Cecelia move into a rundown apartment on New York's Roosevelt Island. She is currently in the midst of divorce proceedings and the apartment, though near an excellent school for her daughter, is all she can afford. From the time she arrives, there are mysterious occurrences and there is a constant drip from the ceiling in the only bedroom. There are also noises coming from the apartment directly above hers, though it would appear to be vacant. Is the apartment haunted or is there a simpler explanation? Written by
The characters of the young Dahlia and Natasha Rimsky are played by the same actress Perla Haney-Jardine. This was supposed to show that Dahlia symbolically saw herself in Natasha as they were both young girls who were neglected by their mother (or in Natasha's case both her parents). See more »
After Dahlia dumps out the first bucket of water that has dripped from the ceiling, the sink is flooded with dark water. The next shot showing the sink has drops of clean water, and no dark water residue anywhere in sight. The water in the sink had not been turned on yet, so there should not have been any clean water in it. See more »
Good character-driven human drama; I blame the teenagers for the low rating.
Once more, a great injustice has been done by IMDb voters. Dark Water currently has a rating of 5.4, with 16% of the voters giving it a 1! Note that 16% is 251 users, so it's not that a lot of people thought it was bad, it just that not many people saw it and/or voted.
It's quite obvious what happened. In what must be the most idiotic marketing move of the century, Dark Water was promoted as a horror movie. Not only is the original Japanese version not that scary to begin with, and focuses more on the drama and the human aspects of the story, but in the remake, the horror element completely gets thrown out the window in favor of an intelligent, mature human drama. I can say that 75% of the people who were with me in the theater had no idea what kind of movie this is going to be. Needless to say, about an hour into it they began shifting in their seats, chatting or giggling. Most of them were teenagers, who came looking for cheap thrills and got a "bore-fest" instead. The same kind of teenagers who, I bet, later voted it a 1.
True, the movie could have been edited a little tighter, and some sequences could have been left on the editing room floor, but it's not boring. It does take its time establishing and developing the relationships and the characters, but since the movie is all about the characters, that's a good thing. It's quite an ambitious drama, and as such, it doesn't always strike home. The script, I think, is the main problem. Since it presents us with very real people with real problems, but doesn't seem to know where to take them from there. As a result, the plot is thin. It's certainly not an event-driven movie. It remains unclear what the main conflict is for the heroine. The writer wasn't fine tuned on what he wanted to say, or maybe the director, Walter Salles, mishandled the material. For me, the story was about learning to let go, and the difference between loving someone and wanting them to be happy, and loving someone so much that you want that person to belong only to you. It's the difference between being willing to sacrifice vs. a selfish and possessive kind of love. I think the movie should have put more weight on that.
Other than that, the film does strike the right chords more often than not, and provides a lot of touching, sad moments. The acting is wonderful and three dimensional. All of the cast does an excellent job, but especially Jennifer Connelly, who proves once more she is the best American actress working today. The cinematography and the art design are beautiful, with a lot of attention to atmosphere. Also, Walter Salles shows some neat directing techniques in playing with the viewer's minds, making us doubt what's real and what's imaginary, and giving visual expression to the heroine's ever deteriorating state of mind.
All in all, I'd rate this movie a 7.5. But 5.4?!!!! That's lower than Fantastic Four, for crying out loud. I just hope that it finds the right audience when it's released on DVD.
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