A Lonely Guy, Two Dead Women, and Three Guys and a Video Camera (It's not what you think.)

"The Woman in Black" (2012)
Technically well executed film, competently directed. Good story but average script. The film is quite atmospheric, gloomy, and visually delicious, but its shocks and scares were by and large stock and predictable and so not really shocking or scary. Excellent performances by the cast, Ciaran Hinds in particular, emphasize the gloom and mystery of the story, but oddly, the story itself didn't hang together well, especially with the ending that disappointingly didn't match the rest of the film. The 1983 book and the 1993 BBC radio drama are much more frightening and tightly written. Average.

"Chronicle" (2012)
Finally we have a 'found footage' movie that fires on all cylinders. It concentrates on telling a simple, good story very well. The characters are interesting and have reasonable arcs, and the script is generally quite tight. The cast is excellent, and the special effects are used to help in telling the story and not just there for spectacle. They are spectacular, however. It all comes together to make "Chronicle" much, much better than average. It's more than a science fiction special effects fiesta. It's a very interesting "What if?" story about human nature. Highly recommended.

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