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The New Daughter Is Kevin Costner’s Only Horror Movie

The New Daughter cast Kevin Costner as a writer whose family is stalked by monsters, and it happens to the be the star’s only real horror movie.

The New Daughter is a 2009 horror movie that ranks as Kevin Costner’s only true outing in the genre. During the peak of his career, Kevin Costner was able to jump between weighty dramas and crowd-pleasing blockbusters with relative ease. Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves and The Bodyguard were both major successes in the early ’90s, and in between those projects he also appeared in more grounded, weightier fare like Oliver Stone’s JFK or Dances With Wolves, which Costner himself helmed.

Costner has a filmography littered with everything from drama to romantic comedies or even post-apocalyptic blockbusters like Waterworld – whose “Ulysses Cut” is better. The star doesn’t seem to be a big fan of horror though, as his output in the genre is relatively bare. Near the start of his career he appeared in a small role in the rightly forgotten slasher Shadows Run Black, and later on, gave a great performance in flawed psychological thriller Mr. Brooks. Neither could truly be labeled a horror film, however, unlike Costner’s The New Daughter from 2009.


Related: Kevin Costner Interview: Let Him Go

Kevin Costner’s horror movie The New Daughter cast him as a recently divorced writer who moves into a new house with his teenage daughter and young son. Costner’s John has little experience with being a parent and struggles to connect with his daughter (Ivana Baquero, who played Pan’s Labyrinth’s Ofelia). While he initially puts that down to her becoming a teen, he soon realizes her changes are connected to a strange mound near their home, and that a race of mysterious beings that live underground have selected her for a terrifying destiny.

the new daughter 2009 monster

The New Daughter is unique simply for seeing Kevin Costner in traditional horror movie situations, from researching his new home’s dark past to leaping back from jumpscares. The core of the movie is the relationship between John and Louisa, with both experiencing the trauma of divorce in their own ways, and it’s easy to imagine Costner saw the story as a family drama first and monster movie second. He gives The New Daughter a firm footing even in its sillier moment, but sadly, it doesn’t quite work as a horror movie either.

The New Daughter – which has an ambiguous ending – does have some effective suspense, including Costner’s John realizing the “mound walkers” are inside his home during the finale. That said, it offers little that hasn’t been seen before, and the creatures themselves aren’t particularly threatening, bearing a mild resemblance to the mold creatures from Resident Evil VII. Again, the novelty of Kevin Costner blasting horror movie monsters with a shotgun gives The New Daughter a unique hook, but the movie itself is too dry to be genuinely chilling. The New Daughter might be Kevin Costner’s only horror movie, but if he’s ever lured back to the genre, hopefully, it will be for something that leaves more of an impression.

Next: What Went Wrong With Waterworld? Why It Cost So Much & Was A Failure

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