My Review of "The Darkest Hour"
This alien invasion movie targeted at adolescence definitely shows its age.
The Darkest Hour is confusing because it may be confused with a much superior movie called Darkest Hour that recently came out. The movie with "The" in the title is about an alien invasion where a bunch of youth try to figure a way to escape Moscow and go back home. The movie came out back in 2011 which isn't that long ago but the special effects didn't age well. It's an okay diversion but there are certain things that just don't make sense in this movie.
The movie starts off in Moscow. The main protagonists are Ben and Sean, they're best friends that are working on a phone app. They're trying to pitch their idea to a company in Moscow but when they get to the meeting they find out their supposed friend Skylar had betrayed them and took their idea.
The duo drown their sorrows at a local bar where they meet Natalie and Anne. Things are going great and then the power goes out. Everyone rushes out to find out that there are balls of light coming from the sky. It's mesmerizing, that is until they notice that these balls of light are aliens trying to kill them. Quickly it becomes war of the worlds.
That's it there's not much about this movie. Throughout the movie they learn new things about these aliens and how they work. It's kind of extremely convenient that they just figure out these little clues about the aliens so quickly. At some times it seems a little too coincidental that they make some of the observations that they do. I get it though. You have to have some of these situations so that the movie can progress.
It's a movie geared toward young adults so they don't really think that the audience expects the young adults to be brilliant and figure everything out themselves. To me it didn't seem that believable but I'm just going with it.
There are however certain things that happen closer to the end of this movie that I didn't expect to happen. It's like this movie took on a different writer an all bets were off. They could have made this movie a series. Thinking about these regular citizens trying to defeat these overpowered aliens. It's pretty crazy and it's a great premise. Sticking all of that within one and half hours is a daunting task.
Again with the ending there is one last mission that doesn't make sense at all. One of the members ends up in the middle of town after this boating accident and the timing of the whole thing doesn't even make sense at all. They obviously made this last mission to extend the movie but really they didn't have to do this. They have enough material to extend the movie without making made up missions. A lot of the movie feels really rushed when they could have extended it for better character development.
I'm sure this movie was state of the art when it came out back in 2011 but the special effects look really dated. They even figured out ways to help their CGI department by making the aliens invisible. This way they are fighting invisible monsters. It kind of works and is lazy at the same time. You can tell they were trying with the special effects but it now looks like a YouTube home movie. It's crazy how fast technology advances. Even the cell phones are super old in this movie. A lot of the tech look really dated.
It's a shame because this movie had a lot of potential but a lot of it was rushed and nonsensical. Some of the efforts were made but due to technology it looks dated today. It was a valiant effort but ultimately it kind of fails. Still that's not to say it doesn't have any entertaining factors.
Overall, I still had a bit of fun watching this movie. I wouldn't say it was a great movie but it is an interesting idea that was explored. It looks like other studios have taken this premise and put a twist to them like Bird Box and Spectral. I have to give this movie a 6 out of 10. I think there are a ton of better options than this movie.