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    January 16, 2012

    MOVIE REVIEW: THE DARKEST HOUR

    THE DARKEST HOUR (PG13)

    Genre: Action/Adventure/Horror/Science Fiction
    Release Date: 29 December 2011
    Running Time: 99 minutes
    Distributor: 20th Century Fox
    Director: Chris Gorak
    Screenplay: Jon Spaihts
    Starring: Emile Hirsch, Olivia Thirlby, Max Minghella, Rachael Taylor, Joel Kinnaman, Veronika Vernadskaya

    Plot: The Darkest Hour is the story of five young people who find themselves stranded in Moscow, fighting to survive in the wake of a devastating alien attack. The 3D thriller highlights the classic beauty of Moscow alongside mind-blowing special effects. REVIEWS AFTER THE JUMP.

    Review: We never grew tired of alien invasions don’t we? The perfect answer for this worrying situations would be – how can we not tired when Hollywood keeps giving this to us. Sadly but the true fact is that the year ends (or rather begins) with ‘The Darkest Hour’; a Hollywood production and Russian based science fiction thriller that takes audience to witness another form of alien invasion. ‘The Darkest Hour’ is not that one entertainment you should prioritize when there are other movies available at this period of time. Even if there is a repeated viewing, I would still chose M:I 4 or Sherlock Holmes 2 over this; for example. Is it really that bad this 3D alien-flick? Not really. Read on to know why.


    The mechanic plot of ‘The Darkest Hour’ is rather unorthodox yet simple. Two Americans – Sean and Ben (Emile Hirsch and Max Minghella) flew to Moscow to present their next-revolutionary-FourSquare-based applications to their Russian investors only to get busted when the third member (Joel Kinnaman) of the team decided to betray them and earned the profits himself. With the remorseful heart-pain, the two linger at the night club and meet two sexy American chicks – Natalie and Anne (Olivia Thirlby and Rachael Taylor). How convenient that night they shall remember when the real drama begins. Blobs of light descended from the sky and start to terrorizing the earth inhabitants. The rest is for you to catch up.

    There are various forms of alien been envisioned by the Hollywood over the last few years. The good thing is that the extraterrestrial force is neither commonly mechanical, robotic nor biological this time around. Rather, Hollywood chooses to equip them with the ability to camouflage with this invisible and electrifying force field, enough to make human looks so weak. Despite this indifference from other alien-related movies, does ‘The Darkness Hour’ come out larger than life to beat the odds of a great entertainment fare? After strings of extra-terrestrial disappointment from Skyline and Battle: LA, is this the end for that all?


    Not really, again! ‘The Darkest Hour’ ends up been coming so close but yet as far as a whole package goes, it comes very far from that. What’s been built in the earlier chapters of the movie; opening with effective-dosing of fear, exposition and acknowledgement that we are no match to this electrical entity are not fruitfully expanded from there onwards. Just admit now that the whole process of how human got vaporize with little blood is quite disturbing at first. Once they survived the rogue assaults on the streets of Moscow, things got unfashionably clumsy.

    The plot thereafter becomes very flat, boring, cheesy and uninspiring. I cannot help to wonder how such a pretty decent concept of this can be ruined by a flat story-telling. Never mind that we have microwave-emitting gun that doesn’t work or a Faraday cage that keeps aliens out or even a cavalry of iron-embedding resistance fighter, none of these works up into well. Instead, there are just too many things go blank and irrelevant in the end. There aren’t proper explanation or exposition on why the aliens come attacking us – not until the final scene of the movie. I bet there forgot to tie in some explanation in the beginning!


    Here, characters are not interesting and are not given much depth to go around. Then, I cannot shake the feeling that the two main characters look like the younger version, carbon copy of Leonardo DiCaprio and Anne Hathaway.

    However, there is still some cool stuff about this movie after all. Not everything in ‘The Darkest Hour’ is bad. For once, I thought the microwave gun is just a brilliant device. Certain action scenes are well-defined and made to illustrate the horror. Then, none of those matters in the end when they start to throw light bulbs to signify the aliens – surprise to see that those bulbs don’t break, what logic?

    In the end of the day, ‘The Darkest Hour’ is a ridiculous science-fiction alien movie that tries to cover the bad, uninspiring and flat storyline with cool pseudo-scientific concepts, but eventually still fail to impress and avoiding another ditch hole like Skyline. This movie makes Battle: Los Angeles feels better.

    MY RATING:
    Story: 1.0
    Casts: 1.5
    Cinematography: 3.0
    Effects: 3.0
    GREEN-TEA-O-METER: 6.2/20.0
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