I've always been fascinated by films willing to go beyond the scope. What seems like a normal supernatural film containing a haunted house becomes much more in the terrifying film from Dark Touch. Directed by Marina de Van (Don’t Look Back) and starring Missy Keaton as Niahm, Dark Touch is reminiscent of films like Firestarter and The Fury but plays more similar to recent horror hit Insidious.
The story follows Keaton as one night her house is torn apart and her parents are killed. What looks like a break in and murder of the parents is really a supernatural force inside of Missy. She does not know how to control this power and when her emotions get the best of her it causes trouble. Friends of the family take Niahm in and she begins to try and control her powers even seeing certain aspects that can work to her advantage. She becomes a one person wrecking crew on the road to an inevitable disaster.
There are many things to like about the Irish supernatural tale as Missy does an excellent job in the main role. What she does to the people of the small town is so intense it could rival the epic finale in the film Carrie. The best parts of Dark Touch are when she uses her power to bring harm to those who have done wrong and with such an innocent face it plays very well on screen.
I was not expecting the film to have such a dark tone but with issues like child abuse and neglect found in the film it was hard to deny. The way the story develops to make Keaton almost seem like an antihero are remarkable and a welcomed surprise to the overall concept.
The interaction between Keaton and the parents Nat and Lucas Gailn (Marcella Plunkett and Padraic Delaney) solidified the film as the welcoming couple did everything to appease her. You feel for the two of them who have brought in what they think is abuse child to a household already containing small children. There was no way they could imagine the damage she could inflict and even though they had their worries they stuck to it. It showed a sensible side to a film filled with dark imagery in a almost gothic styled background. When you see the school scene you will get a true sense of how well this film was made as the flawless execution lived up to a very complete ending.
Overall I think many will be pleased with Dark Touch which fits along nicely with some of the other supernatural films on IFC. Dark Touch has a great pace and does a very nice job building tension through the effects. I always say supernatural films are the hardest to execute but Dark Touch exceeds expectations.
Dark Touch is directed by Marina de Van and stars Missy Keating, Marcella Plunkett,and Padraic Delaney. Dark Touch will be available on DVD on January 28th and is being released courtesy of IFC Films.