When the Lights Went Out

Film, Horror
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When the Lights Went Out

Set in West Yorkshire in 1974, this spooky tale of poltergeist activity makes nowt of its social and political setting: power cuts and the three-day week during the miners’ strike. It’s based on true events from 1968 that involved a teenage boy rather than a 12-year-old girl – but a shift forward allows for nostalgic ’70s set-dressing, while the gender switch prompts unflattering comparisons with ‘The Exorcist’.

Newcomer Tasha Connor makes an impression as lonely Sally, who becomes the focus of a ‘presence’ that flings her about the home she’s just moved into with her parents (Steven Waddington and Kate Ashfield). There are hints of a link to the legend of a disgraced monk, so local priest Father Clifton (Gary Lewis) is called in to exorcise the evil spirit. Writer-director Pat Holden (‘Awaydays’) distorts and embellishes the source material in uninteresting and un-frightening ways. A film that not even the formidable Gary Lewis can save is a scary thing indeed.

By: Nigel Floyd


Release details

Rated: 15
Release date: Friday September 14 2012
Duration: 86 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Pat Holden
Screenwriter: Pat Holden
Cast: Kate Ashfield
Nicky Bell
Alan Brent
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The real events of 1968 were focused on a 14-year-old girl, Diane Pritchard. Two years earlier her brother, Philip, seemed to be at the centre of a haunting. This was only brief tbough.