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Ten Trailers to Keep You Awake #7 – Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (2011)

…keep in mind- I’d seen the trailer online at least six months earlier on Dread Central, so I knew what was coming and I still screamed as loud as anyone in the theater.

Please note that yes, the first 30+ seconds are supposed to be pitch black!

I can keep this one simple: the only theater trailer I’ve ever seen in my life that made me scream. OK. It was somewhere between a loud yelp and a shriek, and I wasn’t alone. Keep in mind this was a theater filled with people ready, pumped, and impatient to see Insidious. Also keep in mind that while you’re watching it on your computer/device, I watched in a theater with top-quality THX digital surround-sound (or whatever the hell the official up-to-date name of the best, most advanced sound system currently used in theater audio is, I’m too exhausted to look it up at the moment). That means the screen was black, and the increasingly creepy whispering voices you’ll hear were (clearly) coming randomly from all around the unusually-dark theater, sometimes overlapping. Up in the corners, all sides, behind you, overhead, beside you. Another thing to keep in mind: I’d seen the DBAOTD trailer online at least six months earlier on Dread Central (in a small pop-out window) albeit with the mute button on, because they were thoughtful to warn those of us with insomnia and/or anxiety issues at the time to dial the volume down a notch or two. So, I knew the seat-jumper was coming and I still screamed as loud as anyone in the theater. Maybe others there had also seen it before, or they were horror fans who sensed a biiiiiig jump coming once the little girl went under the sheets, because you could have heard a pin drop … THEN you sure as hell heard some noise!

Sad to report, the movie was regarded by most fans and critics as a mediocre-at-best letdown, disappointing those of us who had raised expectations from seeing the above trailer; even the majority of devoted Guillermo del Toro’s fans as well as fans of the 1973 made-for-TV original that I heard from were bummed out). So, I decided not to invest in a theater ticket to see it after enough people I trusted told me the scariest parts were in the trailer, and confirmed that the original movie they saw on TV as kids was much scarier and more effective. I haven’t even watched it from Netflix.  I may in the future, but I decided to wait for the time being. In fact, I plan to add this to a future list I’m working up now called, “Trailers That Are Far Better Than the Movie”.

But watch the trailer, and see it if you’re having trouble staying awake. The first teaser for Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (2011) should probably do the trick.