The movie starts in 1974, Seattle Washington. We see a young Dahlia waiting outside in the rain at school. She is waiting for her mother to pick her up. She is the only child who hasnt been picked up. Minutes pass and eventually Dahlia's mother shows up. The mother gets out of her car all depressed and slams the car door behind her. She goes up to Dahlia and grabs her hard by the arm. Dahlia's mother is obviously mentally unstable. She drinks a lot and is abusive. When Dahlia grows up, she is still scarred by the memories of her abusive mother.
Cut to present time New York City. We meet Dahlia Williams (Jennifer Connelly) and her husband Kyle (Dougray Scott). They are in a mediator's office because they recently split and have to decide who gets custody of their younger daughter Ceci. Right now Dahlia is taking care of Ceci. Kyle says that he got a nice place out in Jersey City. Dahlia says that her and Ceci are going apartment shopping tomorrow. She says there is a nice place out on Roosevelt Island that they are going to look at. Dahlia and Kyle both leave the office. Kyle seems pissed as he smokes a cigarette.
The next day we see Dahlia and her young daughter Ceci (Ariel Gade) on the monorail approaching Roosevelt Island. Ceci complains how its technically not part of the city, Dahlia disagrees however. The two laugh and leave the monorail. They walk down the street as they approach the apartment building. Ceci says she already doesnt like it. It doesnt feel right to her. Dahlia says how Ceci will love it and make tons of new friends. They walk past the local school and Dahlia says how close it is to the apartment, which is convenient. The two walk up to the apartment and we meet Mr. Murray (John C. Reilly). He's a very funny yet nervous type guy. Tends to lie a lot too. They walk into the lobby and we meet Mr. Veeck (Pete Postlethwaite) he is the superintendent of the building. For example if there is a busted pipe or rats, he will take care of it.
Murray takes them into the elevator. In the elevator, there is a stench and there is a small puddle of water on the floor. Murray goes on about how he will show them a room on the 9th floor and that there is 10 floors in all. Murray continues his babbling and Ceci grabs Dahlia's hand and the two smile at each other. They come to the 9th floor and the doors open. Ceci runs out and Murray chases after her "Hunny you dont know where your going", Murray yells out. As Dahlia is about to step out of the elevator, the doors close on her. Dahlia gets a little nervous and feels something grab her hand. Here theres a quick flash from Dahlia's childhood and her crazy mother. We go back to that flashback of when young Dahlia is getting picked up by her mom at school. Dahlia is thrown in the car and her mother yells at her.
Cut back to Dahlia in the elevator and the doors open up. Murray is there with Ceci. He laughs and asks Dahlia what happened. Dahlia steps out of the elevator and Murray shows her the room. Murray opens the door as a gust of warm air comes at them. Right away we can see the room is crap. The walls have a very dull yellow color to them and theres a few brown stains on the walls. Murray babbles on again how the room is very cozy and the price is great. Murray shows Ceci a possible room that she can have, however there isnt much of a choice because it's only a one bedroom apartment. Ceci walks in and right away notices a water stain on the ceiling that appears to be dripping a little.
Murray shows Dahlia the kitchen, which is no bigger then the size of a closet. The apartment has a nice living room with a big window. Murray opens it, and him and Dahlia talk. Dahlia says the apartment is smaller then she was hoping. She also says that its very dull looking. Murray adds that he can have some painters come in and fix up the place in a couple of days. Dahlia thinks about it and says she will go talk to Ceci. However, Ceci is missing and the apartment door is open. Dahlia freaks out a little and runs out of the apartment. Her and Murray go down to Veeck and Veeck says he hasn't seen her. Dahlia runs up the flight of stairs and checks each floor. She eventually makes her way up to the 10th floor and sees the door at the end of the hallway slam shut. This room is directly above Dahlia's room.
Dahlia walks down the hallway and goes up to the door. She knocks and calls out for Ceci. Murray shows up and says he couldn't find her. Dahlia runs back to the stairs and makes her way up to the roof. Dahlia runs across the roof, which has a huge water tank on it, and sees Ceci standing near the edge. Dahlia freaks out and grabs Ceci and hugs her. Dahlia yells at Ceci for running off on her own because Ceci is unaware of this building. Ceci apologizes and shows her mom a Hello Kitty backpack she found. Dahlia yells at Murray because the door to the roof shouldn't be unlocked. Murray apologizes and says he will talk to Veeck about it.
They go down to the lobby and meet up with Veeck. Murray yells at Veeck about the rooftop door being open. Ceci shows Veeck the backpack. They open it up and find a few toys inside, especially a doll that Ceci likes. Veeck says he will put it in the lost and found. If no one claims it in a week, Ceci can have it. Murray and Dahlia go out into the lobby. Murray says that theres another couple interested in the apartment so Dahlia would have to make a choice quick. Dahlia talks to Ceci and suddenly Ceci is all excited and yells out that she loves the apartment. Dahlia says they will take it.
We go back to the mediator's office with Dahlia and Kyle. Dahlia says how she got a nice place to stay with Ceci. Kyle is ticked off and starts to yell. He is going to be suing for full custody of Ceci. Before he steps out, he says to Dahlia that she better get a good lawyer. The two mediator's also recommend Dahlia get a good lawyer.
A couple days pass, we see Dahlia and Ceci moving into their apartment. Ceci goes up to Veeck and asks if the backpack has been claimed yet. Veeck says it's only been four days so no, it hasn't. Later that night, Ceci and Dahlia have dinner while they unpack some stuff. The two start laughing and have fun. Here we see that Dahlia has a great and loving relationship with Ceci. We cut to Ceci jumping on the bed right before bedtime. Suddenly there are sounds of someone running across the floor above them. Ceci keeps jumping and laughing. She suddenly stops and stares at the water stain in the ceiling. It has gotten bigger and is dripping again. Dahlia puts a bowl under the leak. Her and Ceci go to bed. Later that night Dahlia wakes up and finds the water still leaking. Dahlia then goes downstairs and notifies Veeck of the leaking situation. Veeck says he will Call Murray and have him take care of it.
The next morning it is pouring outside, Ceci is getting ready for school. Dahlia asks Ceci how she is going to react in front of the class when first introduced. Dahlia pretends to be the teacher and says "OK everyone, this is our new student Ceci." Ceci yells out a friendly 'hello' and Dahlia and Ceci laugh and hug. Once again, showing they have a great relationship. We cut to Dahlia dropping Ceci off at school. We meet the teacher (Camryn Manheim), who is very friendly. Ceci introduces herself to the class. Dahlia takes one last look at Ceci and leaves.
We see Dahlia at a Radiology building applying for a job. The lady says that the job can get pretty boring and the pay isn't the best. All Dahlia would be doing is photocopying peoples insurance bills and paperwork. Dahlia says she knows it's a big step down from her previous jobs, but since the working hours and benefits are great she will take it. Dahlia gets the job.
Back at the apartment Dahlia goes up to Veeck's room and hears him having sex with a women. She knocks on the door and asks Veeck if the leak in her apartment has been fixed. He says there isnt anything he can do. He did call Murray however. Veeck then slams the door in Dahlia's face. Dahlia goes up to her apartment and looks at the leak in the ceiling. Her head starts to hurt and she goes into the bathroom to take some of her pills. Like I said earlier, Dahlia's mom being abusive has really damaged her, therefore Dahlia suffers from Migraines so she is forced to take medication. She pops a pill and turns on the faucet to fill a cup of water. A thick string of black hair comes out of the faucet and Dahlia is grossed out.
Dahlia goes into the living room and calls Murray. Murray says he is busy and can't talk long. Dahlia says how there is a leak in her bedroom ceiling and she hears water running from upstairs. Murray gets puzzled. "Did you say upstairs? There hasn't been anyone up there in years".
Later on Dahlia is resting on the couch. She is woken up by footsteps from the room above her. Dahlia realizes she has had enough. She goes upstairs and knocks on the door. No answer. She continues to knock and the door opens up. Inside, we see that there is water on the apartment floor. Dahlia walks in and calls out for anyone but there is no answer. She walks into the living room and there sees that people's items are still there. She looks on the wall and finds a photograph of a little girl about Ceci's age with her two parents. Dahlia searches around more and finds the kitchen sink faucets still on so she shuts them off. She walks into the bathroom and finds the shower running along with the sink and the toilet over flowing. Suddenly, Veeck pops out which scares the crap out of Dahlia.
Veeck says that he had no idea this room was like this. He blames it on teenagers. He says that kids must break in and flood the rooms for parties or sex. Veeck says that he will take care of it. Later that day, Dahlia picks Ceci up from school. Dahlia and the teacher talk. The teacher says that Ceci is very well behaved. However, Ceci hasn't made friends with any of the other kids yet because Ceci keeps talking to an imaginary friend. Dahlia and Ceci walk back to the apartment. Dahlia and Ceci have dinner and then Ceci goes off to bed. Dahlia is on the phone with her friend Mary. Mary recommends a lawyer that Dahlia can use. The guy's name is Jeff Platzer (Tim Roth) and he is great. Dahlia calls Jeff and explains to him the whole custody situation. Jeff agrees to help Dahlia and says he will meet her in a day or two.
Dahlia hears Ceci talking to someone and she opens the door. Ceci says she wasnt talking to anybody. Dahlia then goes up to Ceci and asks her what the whole imaginary friend is about. Ceci says her name is Natasha. Dahlia closes the door and Ceci starts to sing herself the 'Itsy Bitsy Spider' song. We then hear a little girl's voice take over and sing the rest of the song. Cut to Dahlia and Ceci sleeping. Dahlia has a dream about her mother. In the dream, we see a grown up Dahlia find her mother throwing up in the bathroom due to heavy drinking. Dahlia tries and talks to her mom, but the mom snaps at Dahlia and tells her that she never loved Dahlia and she hates her. Dahlia starts to cry and then wakes up from the dream. Ceci said she heard Dahlia screaming in her sleep.
The next day Ceci is dropped off at school and Dahlia meets Jeff. It is pouring outside again. Dahlia explains how she wants custody of Ceci. Dahlia then explains to Jeff the water leaking in her ceiling and the crappy condition that her apartment is in. She explains that the people who work in the building havent responded to any of her complaints and its been too long. Jeff says he will look into it and call Kyle.
We cut to Dahlia doing laundry in the run down laundry room. A few teenagers go up to Dahlia and say how they think she is hot and how they want her to pleasure them. Dahlia ignores them and the teenagers leave. Dahlia goes to open a garbage bin and finds the Hello Kitty backpack in the garbage. She opens the backpack up and finds the name Natasha written on the flap. Dahlia gets another headache. The washing machine starts to shake. Dahlia ignores it. The shaking gets louder and louder. Dahlia gets nervous and goes up to the machine. We see that dark colored water is dripping out of the machine. Out of nowhere, a girl is seen screaming in the washing machine, which causes Dahlia to jump. Dahlia then calls out for help. Veeck comes in and cleans up the mess. Dahlia shows Veeck the Hello Kitty backpack and Veeck says he has no idea how it got there.
Later on, Dahlia goes to the school to pick up Ceci. She is late. Dahlia meets with the teacher and the teacher is worried about Ceci. Ceci is still talking to the imaginary friend. She also said how Ceci through a fit during class because the teacher said that the imaginary friend isnt allowed to play games with the other kids. The teacher recommends a children therapist but Dahlia refuses. That night over dinner, Dahlia tells Ceci to stop playing with Natasha. Ceci says that Natasha will be upset with her, but she will stop talking to her. Ceci then says that Dahlia is probably mad because Dahlia was abused as a child. Dahlia freaks out and tells Ceci she is way out of line. She then asks Ceci how she knew about her being abused as a kid. Ceci refuses to tell. Dahlia assumes it was Kyle. Dahlia calls up Kyle and yells at him for telling Ceci her personal business.
The next morning it is still raining, Dahlia meets up with Kyle while dropping Ceci off at school. Kyle says he will take Ceci for a day or two. We cut to Ceci in class painting. Suddenly she feels something grab her hand and scribble out the painting she has made. Natasha's spirit is obviously doing this. The teacher tells Ceci that she is to stop painting and go wash up. Ceci goes into the bathroom and all the sinks turn out, spewing out dark colored water. Ceci is scared and she runs into a bathroom stall. Natasha's ghost goes up to the stall and Ceci screams.
Dahlia calls up Jeff. Jeff said that he has spoken to Kyle and Kyle says that Dahlia is completely crazy. Dahlia says that she isn't crazy, Jeff believes her. Jeff says he has to go.
Dahlia breaks down and cries. She can't handle the stress between the custody and her new apartment. Dahlia goes back to her apartment and the place is completely dark and damp. Dahlia notices that the water stain on the ceiling has completely expanded into the living room and has now turned black. Dahlia falls to the floor in the hallway crying. She hits and kicks the walls. She yells out "I HATE YOU, I HATE YOU!" Dahlia meant that towards her mother.
Jeff arrives at the building and meets up with Murray and Veeck. He tells Veeck to follow him, as he goes up to meet Dahlia. Dahlia is on the couch suffering from another severe headache. They all talk. Jeff says that he knows about how Veeck and Murray have been ignoring Dahlia's wishes to get her apartment fixed up. Murray tries to calm Jeff down, but Jeff tells him to shut up. Jeff says that he also knows about the flooded room right above Dahlia's room. He then says that a little girl named Natasha used to live there with her parents. Apparently Natasha's parents both abandoned her one day and Natasha disappeared. Murray says he never knew anything about Natasha disappearing. Veeck then comes out and says he remembers seeing Natasha everyday. He saw her playing in the lobby one day and then never seeing her again. He just never looked into it and never bothered to tell anyone about it.
Jeff grabs Veeck and yells out "How could you not look into it? Clearly if you saw the girl everyday and suddenly stopped seeing her, wouldn't you be a little concerned!?" Later on that night, Dahlia has a moment to herself. She is feeling a little bit better now that Jeff will have her apartment fixed and that Ceci is safe with Kyle. Dahlia starts to hear footsteps from outside. She gets up and checks the hallway outside of her apartment room door. She hears footsteps going up to the roof. Dahlia opens the door on the rooftop and looks around. She sees that water is spilling out of the huge water tank. She climbs up the ladder and opens the hatch to the water tank.
We see Natasha's body floating in the water. Dahlia is stunned and Natasha's eyes snap open. Dahlia screams and closes the hatch. She opens the hatch up again and Natasha's body is still there.
Cut to the police taking Veeck away for ignoring the disappearance of Natasha. Jeff goes up to Dahlia and says her apartment will be fixed up in no time. Dahlia thanks Jeff for all his help. The next morning, it finally stopped raining and the sun is shining bright. Dahlia meets up with Kyle and Ceci at school. Kyle says that he is sorry for everything. He wants Dahlia to move to Jersey City with him and they can share custody of Ceci. Dahlia agrees.
That night, we see Dahlia and Ceci in their apartment. Dahlia is packing things up and they are moving out soon. Dahlia runs a bath for Ceci, and Ceci gets in. Dahlia closes the bathroom door and continues packing. She calls up her friend Mary and the two talk. Dahlia sees Ceci come out of the bath with a towel covering her face. Ceci says to Dahlia that she wants a story read to her. Dahlia lifts the towel up off Ceci's face, and Ceci smiles. Dahlia then hears Ceci splashing around in the tub, she turns around and sees that Natasha was posing as Ceci. Natasha asks Dahlia if she will be her mommy forever and ever. Dahlia screams and runs to the bathroom to get Ceci.
Dahlia runs down the hallway and approaches the bathroom door; which is locked. Dahlia pounds on the door, but nothing happens. We go inside and find Ceci and Natasha in the tub. Ceci is frightened, as Natasha stares at her with a mean look. Dahlia manages to bust the door open. She finds Natasha in the tub, but Ceci is nowhere to be found. A hand pops up from the tub and slams on the glass door. Natasha is holding Ceci underwater. Dahlia immediately runs to the shower glass door, but can't get it open. "You let her go!" Dahlia screams out. Suddenly, dark water starts pouring out of the sink and busting out of the toilet, filling the room. Dahlia picks up a hairdryer and attempts to break the shower glass door, but it is useless. As water is filling up the room, Dahlia comes face to face with Natasha. "What do you want?" Dahlia cries out. Natasha says that she just wants a loving Mommy. As water fills up the room and tension builds up, Dahlia finally says that she will be Natasha's Mommy forever. The room fills up, blasting Dahlia in the face with water. The screen fades out for a couple of seconds and we come back and see the bathroom, the flood is gone. We see Dahlia's dead body on the floor, she has drowned. We then see Dahlia and Natasha holding hands as they walk into the elevator as spirits. Dahlia sacrificed herself in order to save Ceci.
We see Ceci in a police station. Kyle comes in crying and the two hug. Kyle now has custody of Ceci. Three weeks later, we see Ceci and Kyle going back to the apartment to gather a few boxes. They leave the room and head towards the elevator. They go down to the lobby. Kyle steps out, but the doors close on Ceci sealing her inside. Ceci sees a puddle of water in the corner of the elevator. Dahlia's hands reach out and holds Ceci's face. Ceci smiles back at her mom who is now a spirit. Dahlia's spirit says "I will always be here when you need me Ceci, I will always love you". Ceci smiles as tears come down her face. Kyle manages to get the elevator door open. The two drive off happily.
NOTE:HorrorFreak889 also adds this explanation... The reason why Dahlia and Ceci have been terrorized by Natasha's spirit in their new apartment, is because Natasha was jealous of the great relationship that Dahlia and Ceci shared. While Natasha was alive, she was very lonely because her mother neglected her. Natasha drowned in the water tank and the whole incident was ignored. Once Dahlia and Ceci moved in, Natasha's spirit saw the perfect opportunity to finally get some attention from a loving mother, such as Dahlia. The reason why Natasha used dark water to get attention from Dahlia, was because Natasha drowned and the dark symbolizes Natasha's life on earth.
*CUT TO THE CHASE: Dahlia and her daughter Ceci are being haunted by the child ghost of a former tenant of the upstairs apartment. In the climatic ending, Dahlia sacrifices herself to save her daughter. In the afterlife, Dahlia will be the mother the ghost never really had and Ceci will be safe on earth with her father.
You can send in your spoiler to other movies by going here.
Send your questions or comments about this or any other spoiler to: THEMOVIESPOILER.com