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Film Review - Darby and the Dead


With a title like “Darby and the Dead,” expectations are put into place for a horror extravaganza. It comes with some surprise to learn that the screenplay (by Becca Greene) isn’t interested at all in summoning fears, instead going the “Mean Girl” route with this tale of a high schooler and her battle with popularity, also dealing with the deceased as a medium. It’s a bizarre mashing of subgenres, but teen cinema wins out in the picture, which is mostly interested in rehashing adolescent woes concerning relationships and self-esteem challenges, occasionally getting into issues with the other side. Two very bright performances from Riele Downs and Auli’i Cravalho offer plenty of charm and energy to the feature, but the sameness of “Darby and the Dead” prevents it from doing something interesting with life and death, with the story gradually sinking back into predictability after a lively opening act. Read the rest at


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