A horror-less horror film, a not-very-mysterious mystery

A police detective (Ethan Hawke) in Minnesota in 1990, responding to a young woman’s (Emma Watson) allegations of heinous crimes against her by her father, ignites a nationwide fear epidemic regarding “Satanic ritual abuse.” And WTF is that? He enlists the help of a psychiatrist (David Thewlis), and is soon himself beset by unpleasant dreams and stuff like that. While director Alejandro Amenabar, who has made far better films (Abre Los Ojos, The Others) achieves a certain eeriness, this thinly plotted film relies overmuch on “boo” moments and the old “and then I woke up” chestnut. And then it just ends. Filmmakers and actors on this level shouldn’t be wasting their time on such tepid disappointments. (106 min)