I've actually seen the idea of an entity existing only in shadow in movies, cartoons and books but the trailer of this film shows how effective the scare could be. Does the film live up to the rest of the gimmick though?
Rebecca left her mother's eccentric ways but when her younger step brother experiences the horrors she lived through, she finds herself braving the darkness once more.
Since this is a horror story, some of the usual clichés are present. Folks who don't listen to reason, people who don't share information, decisions that aren't too smart, actions that follow through only to increase tension... That's fine. That's accepted. There were a few clever tricks the characters use (beep) and some that actually don't pan out (purple) but at least the option was there. Could have been better but, still, decent try.
The monster doesn't get fully explained (did she age? Where did the claws come from?) but she has great visuals when kept all in shadow. Seeing her complete would have ruined the mystique. Her silhouette is enough as an icon, I suppose.
The scare tactics were effective to the point that I expected the attack to come at any point (and was slightly disappointed when it didn't). There were more ways that the creature could have menaced the characters but there were still more techniques they could have used to defend themselves, if they were smarter. That's just a case of the usual horror checklist though. Surprisingly, there's no real sex involved, haha.
Lights Out works as a supernatural thriller. It wasn't the comedic type but it didn't take itself completely seriously either so there wasn't too much over acting. It's a bright spot in the current horror crop as the rules are more defined and everyone has a fighting chance.