Monday, 8 April 2013

Review: Dark Skies

World of Blackout 77-Word Film Review

Dark Skies Poster

Dark Skies
Cert: 15 / 97 mins / Dir. Scott Stewart

The most terrifying thing about this film is the amount of product placement the Apple Corporation have secured. Made all the more prominent by the hauntingly generic "Search" page which tells us the film-makers couldn't get a 'yes' from Google.

So anyway, Dark Skies is basically Poltergeist with aliens, and it's every bit as derivative and lazy as that sounds. It's exactly like every haunted-family horror you've seen over the past 5-10 years, which is a shame because there are a few nice ideas dotted here and there, and the cast do an admirable job of playing things straight. But there are too many extreme-close-up/quiet-quiet-LOUD moments, and creepy children's drawings, and night-vision surveillance cameras, and weird wise old conspiracy theorists for me to actually commit to taking any of it seriously. Normally I'd say that this sort of thing is a good entry-point to the genre, but it's not. Insidious is a far more solid film by comparison, even if it's just as colour-by-numbers.

And I'm not even going to mention the 'why would you introduce a notedly aggressive Alsatian dog into your already troubled family-space with the intention of using it as an early warning system and ultimately sending it batshit-insane when trouble kicks off, when you could just leave the television on to act as a less-bitey-alert, because fuck it you've managed to buy a pump-action shotgun over the counter on the same day with no waiting period, and then have the aforementioned television on and watch the aforementioned dog go apeshit but not get aggressive at all, just shit-scared, so what exactly was the point of putting the dog in the film?

Oh, I just did.

Ultimately, I can't hate it because I think it's been made with some genuine gusto. Sadly that didn't extend to the writing.
Don't spend money seeing this film.

Is the trailer representative of the film?
Pretty much.

Did I laugh, cry, gasp and sigh when I was supposed to?
Not really. Although I suspect I did laugh more than I was supposed to..

Does it achieve what it sets out to do?
Not for me.

Pay at the cinema, Rent on DVD or just wait for it to be on the telly?

Will I think less of you if we disagree about how good/bad this film is?

Will I watch it again?

Is there a Wilhelm Scream?

And because you won't be happy until I've given it a score...

• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
• Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.
• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organisations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

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