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The Watcher In The Woods (1980)

The Watcher In The Woods (1980)

"She's going to stay here. Is that what you wanted?" -Mrs. Aylwood

This is one movie I remember from the my childhood that scared the living hell out of me. I laugh about it now, not only because it's a PG movie but also because it was released by Disney, although this is one scary little movie for younger kids. It's about a family who moves into an old English manor in the woods. Jan and her younger sister Ellie begin having strange occurences. Jan sees the reflection of a blindfolded girl in the mirror, triangles are etched in glass, and Ellie begins hearing voices, including a voice telling her to name her new puppy "Nerak", the name Karen spelled backwards.

We later learn that Karen is the name of Mrs. Aylwood (the owner of the property) 's daughter, who went missing in the woods surrounding the house thirty years ago. I won't spoil the rest for you, but it is quite a good little movie.

Legendary actress Bette Davis stars as Mrs. Aylwood, the odd care-taker of the property and the mother of the girl who went missing. I recently picked up a copy on DVD and was surprised they made it. To be honest, this is personally one of my little favorites.

Ultimately, this is a good family oriented movie, and should give a few little scares. It's content is nothing too violent, but don't let younger kids watch it, it has some moments that might frighten them. This movie is probably appropriate for ages 11 or 12 and up, because most kids under that age probably won't understand it. And the ending was quite a twist. All in all a very good mystery/horror film with some eerie moments. It may be hard to find, but if you can find the DVD or video, I'd recommend it.

Starring: Bette Davis, Lynn-Holly Johnson, and Kyle Richards
Theatrical Release: April 17, 1980
Directed By: John Hough

My rating (out of 5 stars):

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