Darkest Hour (2005) Poster

(2005)

User Reviews

Review this title
4 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
8/10
Murder Mystery party turns ugly when a real murderer shows up!
rembrandt3618 December 2008
Warning: Spoilers
The peaceful town of North Bend, Washington is terrorized by a serial killer only known as "The North Bend Reaper." He was a hulking figure in a skull mask whom adorned himself in a cloak made from swatches of material taken from his victim's attire. In 1988 he killed multiple citizens in the area, before disappearing, apparently killed by three hunters out for revenge.

In present day, a troupe of actors, led by Ben Traimer (Todd Hann), is starting a murder mystery party company very near where the original tragedies of 1988 took place. The town is in an uproar because the murder mystery is going to be based on the local legend – the North Bend Reaper. Because of this, the location of the party is being kept top secret – a summer camp closed for the Fall.

Besides those involved in the company, the guests for the weekend include Therese and Tibor (Tristan Risk and Dave Cote), Joseph (Mike Coleman) an investigative reporter, Andrew (Steve McGowan) who thinks with his little head, and Rosemary (Patricia Nudd) and Lisa (Angie Zachary). Actor Drieghton (Benjamin Gutknecht), who wears Alice Cooper Makeup and dresses as a mod pallbearer, runs the weekend's events. The guest that solves the "Slasher-Flick" murder mystery by the end of the weekend wins a cash prize of $500.

The only problem is that this has all caught the attention of the original North Bend Reaper, and there are going to be some real murders at the Murder Mystery gathering… So, I have watched this movie a few times, and I cannot understand why people are jumping all over it so negatively. It is actually a pretty well put together slasher - certainly more intelligent than most that I have seen. The story is very sound, and the actors do not embarrass themselves. If anything they look like they are having a tremendously good time. The character of Dreighton is a true stand out. The design on the North Bend Reaper costume is excellent. And, Lee Tomaschefski is drop dead gorgeous. I wish she had had a nude scene.

Are the murders themselves graphic? No, but there ARE brutal. This little indie film has a true professional sheen to it. The production value is tremendous for what must have been a very low budget. The writing suffers at times, there are a few logistical problems, but overall you can tell that those in charge cared and did their damnedest to deliver entertainment - and they do.

Sure, some of the characters are a little clichéd, but most are fleshed out a little more than is normal for this sort of fare. The murder "game" itself looks like a lot of fun, and I wish we had a little more of that on the screen; maybe an extra could have been the actual game. The ending - which I feel is an open ending - is well done. Not everything is wrapped into a neat package, but at the same time it MAKES SENSE. How many slashers can boast that? This film has gotten good reviews as well. I would side with those as I think that if you give DARKEST HOUR a chance, you will enjoy it. I am happy that I own it, and it definitely is worth a rental. Extras on the disc include outtakes and deleted scenes, as well as trailers. I truly wish it had come with a commentary track.

Check it out!
4 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
One of the better indie horror films of the past few years.
Apoch66627 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
I try to not use spoilers, but I use the warning just in case. My apologies if there is anything that ruins it for you.

To see this film get such a horrible score is rather shocking. Darkest Hour is perhaps one of the best independently made, low budget horror films you could find in the past few years. Sure, some come out of the gate with much hype built in, only to disappoint through poor acting and/or production quality, or, in the case of one film prime for an example, the movie Automaton Transfusion, with it's post-edited shaky cam effect that clearly came standard with the editing software used to compile the necessary scenes.

Going into this with the understanding that it is a low budget film definitely helps out in accepting the fact that it's a b-movie slasher that holds a Scream feel. While both of these films cannot be compared outside of the stabbing and somewhat similar costumes, both of these films had brilliant concepts. As far as Darkest Hour goes, the concept is simple, but rarely used: Put the killer in a "solve the murder" weekend getaway. This means that nobody knows they're going to die, even if they expect it.

While some of the writing was rather poor, with very little being said that would be remembered, outside of such one liners as "I'll give you five across the face and a foot in the ***". Some may say the acting was bad, but you cannot expect a-list celebrity acting from an indie film. Some of the acting was pretty good, actually. Tibor was very reminiscent of an old friend, and the "host" of the party played his roll very well, as well as a few other key note people.

Aside the typical, the only real draw back to the film was that the writers and producers didn't really push the concept. Think about it. Here we have a group of people who paid for a real life scare to win money, a chance to be part of a dinner theater-esquire murder mystery in the woods. You have the drug use, the alcoholism, and sex, which surprisingly there was very little of. But really, the lack of sex does absolutely nothing to tarnish the film. Instead, what tarnishes it is the lack of brutality. Here we have a killer, with all these fresh, nimble teenagers just ready to be stabbed, and the worst that you see is perhaps a few stabs here and there, a little fake blood, and perhaps the body will be dragged by the hair. If they only expanded on the violence, this could have been another cult hit like Sleepaway Camp. Dismemberment, gore, postmortem rape, anything twisted that a killer would ever possibly think of, and nobody would be the wiser...

And, gasp, it actually has an ending! Well, somewhat. While it doesn't truly tie up all the loose ends, it has one hell of climactic shoot out that will either leaving you screaming for that person to die and be happy, or be rather aggravated that you saw it coming a mile away. But, pay close attention to the beginning of the film, and you will realize exactly what is going on. If you miss it, then you clearly are blind, but won't be left out in the dark as it is referenced again at the end of the movie.

All in all, the film is pretty good. It's definitely not a blockbuster, but it could have held its own fairly well in the box office. The writers had a good idea, and ran with it, giving the killer free reign over his victims without them even knowing a thing, thinking it's all part of the game and becoming willing contestants to their own homicide. Though it's not graphic, and only slightly violent, it's still one of the better indie releases in the past few years and worth at least one run through.
4 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
1/10
Carefull....Watching this could make you sick from how crappy it is...
Greybear3331 May 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Dialogue: Actors couldn't even say lines this bad with a straight face. Acting: Well what can you say... I think the acting was the same quality you would find from picking up unemployed strangers on the side of the road and giving them their lines 5 minutes before filming.

Film quality: Handy cam quality, fuzzy, out of focus, as bad or worse than that seen in Monster Man.

Painted host for the "Slasher flick" weekend: Sorry but your every attempt to be ominous or scary would have made me laugh had I been in the group.

Overall: Don't waste your time... not worth the slot it would take from your video rental.

Don't get me wrong, I love Indie Horror and hats off to these folks for trying but there is LOTS of room for improvement.
3 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
1/10
double plus ungood
blue_buffalo6 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
If a movie is a child the filmmakers nurture and bring into this world then this film is spent condom on the floor of a pickup truck in a junkyard used by broken prostitutes for johns too cheap to spring for a hotel.

Can I say anything's good? Not really. 18A rating for barely any gore or nakedness. Production value that is worse than late 70's porn. A script that seemed to just stop. That's the spoiler. The ending doesn't actually end as much as stop. It uses the days of the week to give us the timeline but they propel the script forward.

It just didn't make sense. My favorite part was at the end. The apparent killer driving a truck picks up a girl then pulls over to the side of the road to kill her. It was like the killer had concern for other drivers. Like the murder was a cell phone call.

Over all I give it a one out of ten.
0 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews


Recently Viewed