I believe the most rational mind can play tricks in the dark.


In the Edwardian era, in a small village, three little girls are playing inside together. Suddenly, they look up (and see a veiled woman in black, whose glimpse we obscurely see later in the scene) and walk in a trance-like state to the window, jumping out to their deaths.

In London, England|London Arthur Kipps (Daniel Radcliffe), a lawyer, and the widowed father of four-year-old Joseph, is charged by his office to obtain the paperwork with which to sell a large manor – the isolated and desolate Eel Marsh House. Though he is hesitant to leave his son, Arthur's boss warns him that if he fails to complete his duty, he will lose his job. Arthur is treated coldly upon his arrival, barely able to get a room for the night, but he meets a kind local man named Samuel Daily and his wife Elisabeth, who allow him to stay at their home. Arthur visits his legal contact, Mr. Jerome, who hurries him off, telling him to return to London. Instead, Arthur travels to Eel Marsh House, where he feels he will be able to thoroughly complete his work. While there, he is distracted by odd noises, screams, and the appearance of a woman dressed in black. Believing there was an accident, Arthur reports the incident to the police. Three children come into the police station; two boys carrying their sickly pale sister, Victoria, who had just drunk. She collapses in Arthur's arms and dies. The locals angrily state Victoria died because Arthur saw "the woman" at Eel Marsh House.

That night, Sam reveals he and his wife lost their young son in a drowning accident, and Elisabeth, who believes her son speaks through her, carves a figure into the table of someone being hanged, before she is sedated. The next day, Arthur stays overnight at Eel Marsh House to finish his work, and discovers letters from Alice Drablow, the home's recently-deceased owner, and her apparently mentally-disturbed sister Jennet Humfrye. Jennet claims Alice stole her son Nathaniel away from her by deeming her mentally unfit to raise the child, and demands to let her see him. The letters reveal that the boy drowned in the marsh and that Jennet blamed Alice because she only saved herself instead of Nathaniel. Jennet then committed suicide at the house after stating she will never forgive Alice. Toys begin making noise in Nathaniel's room, where Arthur sees the spirit of the Woman in Black again.

When Arther returns to town, he sees Mr. Jerome's house on fire and rushes in to save Lucy, Mr. Jerome's daughter. Under the influence of the Woman in Black, Lucy sets fire to the house

Arthur learns that the children's deaths are the work of Jennet, who is the Woman in Black; since her own child was taken from her, she takes away every child from the townspeople by causing the children to commit suicide. Whenever Jennet is seen, a child dies. Elisabeth indicates that Joseph, who is coming to the village with his nanny the following day, is a target for the Woman in Black. In an attempt to lift the curse, Arthur hopes to reunite Nathaniel and Jennet and finds the boy's body in the marsh, still in the horse carriage. They place Nathaniel's corpse in Eel Marsh House, where Jennet finds him; it appears to Arthur that she is satisfied. However, she is unable to hold her son, presumably because she can't forgive Alice. Arthur and Sam then place Jennet's son in the grave with her.

The next night, Joseph and Arthur are reunited at the train station and intend to return to London. Arthur sees the Woman in Black on the other side of the platform; Joseph is walking along the train tracks under her influence. It becomes apparent that the curse will never be lifted, and that Jennet will never forgive the wrongs done her. Arthur leaps onto the tracks to save Joseph from an oncoming train. As Sam looks on, horrified, he sees the Woman in Black and the faces of all the children she has taken in the past in the train windows. Once the train passes, Arthur opens his eyes, but the whole station is dark. As Arthur looks around in surprise, Joseph asks, "Who's that lady?" Arthur sees his wife and then smiles before responding, "That's your Mummy." The family then disappears into the fog together. Jennet watches them sadly, then looks at us, and the screen abruptly cuts to black.










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Directed by James Watkins
Produced by Richard Jackson
Simon Oakes
Brian Oliver
Written by Susan Hill
Starring Daniel Radcliffe
Ciarán Hinds
Janet McTeer
Liz White
Music by Marco Beltrami
Distributed by Momentum Pictures
Release date(s) 10 February 2012
Running time 95 mins.
Language English
Budget $15 million