If “The Darkness” taught me anything it’s that Kevin bacon can’t save everything. The film is directed by Greg McLean and stars Kevin Bacon, Radha Mitchell and David Mazouz. I personally love Kevin Bacon he’s a bit of a guilty pleasure and films like “Footloose” and the TV show “The Following” are amazing in my opinion. But this film was awful, this was my first truly awful Bacon film and there’s not even one redeeming quality.
Starting off with the script, now recently I saw “Friend request” which I thought had the worst possible script i’d ever heard, the plot revolved around someone unfriending someone on Facebook and came out with the classic line “why did you unfriend me you bitch”. But this, somehow, was worse. Every line was a cliche, people were coming out with random lines that didn’t fit with the story. At some point I think there were even region specific lines (which didn’t work) about bear grylls and a few other things (as far as I was aware he’s not a big thing in America). It felt like the writers had taken the most cliche lines from every film they’d seen and collated them all into this mess. Also there is a bit were the mother decides to drown her sorrows in “absolut vodka” which I wouldn’t mention but there is a scene where she is searching for a drink and goes through lots of bottles all without labels and then picks that one. The bottle from that point on is always facing the camera so the label can be seen, even when being drunk. I don’t know if this is some sort of marketing campaign (it was too obvious to be an accident) but associating your product with alcoholism to help with depression can’t be a good marketing technique. The story itself is just dull, nothing interesting ever happens. My highlight was the completely random appearance of a snake as a jump scare, suffice to say it didn’t work and I just burst out laughing. That’s not the only terrible jump scare, the film is riddled with them. Every other scene is a poorly executed, not scary “jump scare” with a loud sound cue. This film is the perfect example of terrible horror because I could hardly call it horror, there is never a point that is in any way scary and only a few people were even jumping at the “jump scares”. There was no other attempts at horror, there’s a few pretty poorly explained supernatural events that happened but they’re all dull like the rest of the film. The scariest part of the story is the random anorexia story that appears for 5 minutes and then disappears straight away, it reminded me of the cancer storyline from “The room” which obviously is not a good thing.
The cast was abysmal. They were all wooden and seemed like none of them knew their lines. Clearly they were there just for the money and had no interest in making something good. Bacon tried and tried but it never paid off, he’s not particularly awful in this but he’s by no means good. I’m sure he’ll just look back on this as a blip in his career. The wife and daughter were both emotionless robots who struggled to show anything that didnt come off as fake. It was like watching 2 female Jaden Smiths try and act, neither of them could show anything believable that wasnt a slightly aggressive looking face. The child this entire event was centered around was one of the worst child actors I’ve seen. He’s the star of Gotham (playing young Bruce Wayne) and even in that he comes across as wooden, I don’t know how he is getting these relatively big roles. Every line he reads out has zero emotion, considering he’s been haunted by a Indian satanic tribe he’s surprisingly unphased when his dad gets brutally attacked by a wolf. Well I say brutally, there lies another issue, the violence is all terrible a mixture of poor CGI and terrible effects take you out of the “action” even more than the wooden acting and terrible plot. The CGI for the various animals and ghostly occurrences is all equally terrible and they’d fit better in a low budget homemade film then they would a larger scale/budget movie.
Direction was poor, it lacked any imagination and every scene seemed to be the bare minimum. I’m pretty sure I saw a sound technician in the background at one point but the director obviously didn’t care enough to reshoot. The soundtrack was awful and didn’t fit any of the scenes at all, supposedly scary scenes were ladened with upbeat tracks which completely ruined the atmosphere.
This film just felt like a huge B movie but it starred a relatively famous cast. It’s not even so bad it’s funny the film is just generally boring (although the snake bit is hilarious). I wasn’t expecting anything flawless at all, but the film is so much worse than I could have ever predicted it to be. Studios should be shown this before they sign off on new horror films and be told if it’s like this don’t make it.
Written by- Dawson Roberts
Directed By- Greg McLean
Written By- Shayne Armstrong, S.P. Krause, Greg McLean
Produced By- Jason Blum, Matthew Kaplan, Bianca Martino, Greg McLean