Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"


Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.


    No Rating Available

Watch This Review

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Movie Review

"Why am I frowning in all these pictures?" Arthur asks his young son when looking at the boy's crayon drawings. "Because that's how your face looks," the boy innocently replies. And as much as those words sting, Arthur knows they're true. Ever since his wife passed away in childbirth, the young lawyer has been struggling. When she died, a large piece of Arthur died with her. But that's going to change.

Arthur just needs to complete this simple job in front of him. He'll show his firm that he can be dependable. That he can get beyond the pain. And then he'll be OK. Then he'll begin again with his son. He just has to take care of the dead Mrs. Drablow's papers first.

Of course, those bundled and crumpled documents are stashed and hidden all over a cobwebby old mansion—a creepy place set out in the middle of nowhere on an island that can only be reached by carriage during low tide. The locals are protesting his efforts and warning of hauntings. But he's not a man who believes in such things. He's sure he can do what needs doing and be done with it.

Until he sees the woman in black.

There she stands in the graveyard near the house, all wrapped in a shroud. And when he hurries down to see who she is, she's gone. All he finds is a thick swirling haze and a huge cross, set atilt, deep in a murky black marsh. Arthur is alone with the fog and his chilled thoughts.

And then the screaming begins.

Positive Elements

Arthur's love for his dearly departed wife and anguish over her loss is palpable. He thinks of her repeatedly—as she was in life and in disjointed visions of her as a spirit clothed in white. He certainly loves his son, but he's had a hard time staying focused on the world as it is, rather than as it was. Still, he wants to set things right in his life no matter what it takes. And he dedicates himself to starting over for his boy's sake.

Mr. Daily is one of the only people in the dreary village of Crythin Gifford who's willing to help Arthur. He sees a sort of kindred spirit in Arthur and gives all the support he can, including almost ruining his expensive car to pull a wagon out of the marsh.

Spiritual Content

Since this is a ghost story, dark, spooky happenings abound. The old mansion, the Eel Marsh House, creaks and thumps. Small dolls and toys seem to take on life. Echoes of past events—deadly events—shout out of the fog. And we see The Woman in Black in numerous spectral forms, from formless shadow to a screaming reflection in a window pane to a flashed vision of a hanging corpse to a disconnected dark-eyed face to a full-bodied, very solid menace.

Arthur studies an ad in the newspaper for a spiritualist who holds séances. And he implies later that he's already tried that course to reach out to his wife. Mr. Daily, however, refuses to believe in all the ghost talk. "If we open the door to superstition, where does that lead?" the man asks. "It's just chasing shadows. When we die, we go up there. We don't stay down here."

The movie begs to differ. We see the ghosts of dead children standing together in a graveyard. Arthur drapes a crucifix around the neck of a child's corpse. Tombstones are adorned with crosses and angel figures. Some sport inscriptions. We read, "God protects me" and "In God's hands."

Mr. Daily's wife believes she is possessed by the spirit of her dead son. A couple of times she flies into a spasmodic fit, grabs a sharp object and begins carving a message into any nearby surface. Once, she speaks with a child's voice. Arthur finds papers scrawled with hate-filled curses. "Get thee to hell, you harlot," one reads.

[Spoiler Warning] Arthur and his son are reunited with Arthur's wife in the afterlife. They blissfully hold hands and walk away together.

Sexual Content


Violent Content

On several occasions, the ghost woman's specter appears and silently commands children to kill themselves. Thus, we see one girl set herself on fire, three others jump out of a third-floor window, a 5-year-old boy walking toward an oncoming train and a girl spitting up blood after drinking lye. (We don't see the impact of falls or speeding vehicles.)

When Arthur's wife dies, the camera focuses on a bloodstain on the bed sheets. A fire consumes a family's home, killing their child. In an attempt to retrieve a body from the marsh, Arthur sinks beneath the mucky surface and almost drowns.

Crude or Profane Language

One use of "h‑‑‑." Two or three misuses of God's name.

Drug and Alcohol Content

Arthur and Mr. Daily drink glasses of wine and brandy throughout. Arthur also shares a few glasses of alcohol with the innkeeper's wife at the local hotel. During one of Mrs. Daily's fits, her husband renders her unconscious with what appears to be a cloth soaked with chloroform.

Other Negative Elements


Horror buffs may remember the name Hammer Film Productions—a moniker that was splashed across the title screens of lots of classic Frankenstein, Dracula and Mummy movies back in the '50s, '60s and '70s. Now, in the post-Harry Potter era, this Daniel Radcliffe vehicle is the first film in many a mist-shrouded full moon to resurrect and wear that badge. And it's a pretty good fit.

This is a Victorian-sensibility ghost tale that takes an old-school approach to the art of a scare. Why spend gazillions on CGI monstrosities and a huge cast of ghoulies when one man alone with mucky marshes, thumping floorboards, smoldering candle wicks and deep, dank haunted mansion shadows will do? The shrieks, creaks and mirrored peeks deliver an almost organic-feeling, back-to-basics kind of chill. And Radcliffe—bestubbled, no longer bespectacled and looking older—does a respectable job in a morosely gothic, blandly low-key way.

Like all those monster mashes before it, however, The Woman in Black has its share of problems. There are logic holes here big enough to drive a rather large poltergeist and her horse-drawn carriage through. And the movie's convulsing spirituality contradicts itself repeatedly with promises of a peaceful afterlife juxtaposed against an all-powerful vengeful evil that can murder innocent children and leave them trapped in eternal torment.

Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles



Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews



Readability Age Range



Daniel Radcliffe as Arthur Kipps; Ciarán Hinds as Mr. Daily; Misha Handley as Joseph Kipps; Liz White as Jennet/The Woman in Black


James Watkins ( )


CBS Films



Record Label



In Theaters

February 3, 2012

On Video

May 22, 2012

Year Published



Bob Hoose

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!