>> Thanks to streaming platforms like Netflix, there have been many options this October for your horror movie fix. Yet in a time where films and shows are easily accessible through large streaming platforms, it’s easy for independent and art house films to be swept under the rug. The art-house horror genre is a trippy place, which can be quite polarizing. However, it can be one of the best genres to visit during the month of October when you want to switch out some of the blockbuster chills for something a little more treacherous.
The latest art-house horror flick to hit cinemas and streaming is Justin P. Lange’s directorial debut The Dark. The Dark follows an “undead” girl and her friendship with a blind boy she meets in the forest she lives in. Both are victims of extreme abuse and they find comfort in each others presence. They believe in the possibility of creating a better life at the cost of bloodshed.
The visual aspect of this film is quite appealing, it’s incredibly sophisticated and well composed. A lot of the shots reminded me of the cinematographer Roger Deakins, specifically his work in Prisoners. The film overall lacks camera movement, specifically tracking and panning shots. However, we typically see this in low budget films. In this case, the film made up for the lack of movement with incredibly slow zooms, which added a sense of suspense and unease (nice save, guys). The practical effects and makeup were pretty impressive as well.
Now I have to admit the visuals are the only thing this film did well. The plot of this film is extremely boring, it’s bogged with metaphors that get muddled due to the very literal plot. For a film titled The Dark most of the film takes place in daylight and its metaphorical reasoning isn’t enough to justify it. Its dialogue is weak, and the characters are more like poor representations of abuse rather than actual characters with motives and feelings.
If you need some visual inspiration, maybe give this film a watch. Otherwise, this is a hard pass. Steer clear of this small art house flick when looking for a movie to watch. This movie is sure to bore you to death. 3/10 <<