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Overall Rating

Awesome: 33.33%
Worth A Look: 16.67%
Just Average: 0%
Pretty Crappy: 11.11%

1 review, 12 user ratings

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Dark Hours, The
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by Erik Childress

"The Landers Sisters Are Smarter Than Anyone In This Movie"
1 stars

SCREENED AT THE 2005 CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL: I’m having trouble recalling what would be the most incompetent piece of directing within the horror genre I’ve ever seen. Your routine slasher exercises deliver precisely what most of them promise in the blood-and-breasts department, no matter how boring or poorly acted. The twisty, more psychological experiments can live or die off its revelations and the post-Keyser Soze era is more conducive to complaints in the script department than its final presentation. This spinoff of the horror genre are usually slick enough or keep its participants piecing its puzzle long enough to barely notice the work of the helmer. But Paul Fox takes the cake and falls flat into it with one of the limpest stalker terrors to ever frustrate an audience. If this movie had any balls at all it would suck them. Because that’s all this movie does – suck balls.

Dr. Samantha Goodman (Kate Greenhouse) works in a psychiatric institution where she analyzes brain matter to discover the nature of violent offenders. Her cold methods upset her patients, but maybe she’s just got her mind on other things like the tumor penetrating it. Taking some time off, she heads up to a cabin to meet hubby Dave (Gordon Currie) and sister Melody (Iris Graham), whom we can deduce have been up to more than preparing dinner.

The cozy weekend takes a horrific turn when a creepy little drifter (Dov Tiefenbach) shows up and under the guise of help, holds them at gunpoint before an even more menacing cipher enters the picture. Harlan Pyne (Aidan Devine) is a former patient of Sam’s - former in that he just escaped – and looks for a little payback by running the psychological gamut on her through a series of dangerous games.

As with any killer stalker film, whether it be Friday the 13th or Silence of the Lambs, the emphasis of the terror depends on the helplessness of the victims. This can be done through the strength of the villain or in the depletion of escape routes; accomplished by claustrophobic surroundings, weather conditions, etc… The Dark Hours has no conceivable position on how to make this happen and loses us instantly. We may boast about how brave we would be in the same situation or even get interactive in trying to coax the characters into safety. But our eagerness turns instantly into restlessness as we wonder why no one is able to overpower the little pissant sidekick. Yes, he’s got a gun but he’s hardly an ace. A light breeze would distract this kid. The home team has a 3-to-2 advantage on these bastards and they allow them to talk and talk and lose focus constantly and none of Harlan’s games approach a level of creativity beyond your average game of Spin the Bottle.

If you haven’t given up and started rooting for a mountain goat attack, then don’t be surprised when The Dark Hours goes into territory that make the final acts of Identity and High Tension seem plausible. What’s so insincere about its machinations is the way it slowly eases you into his ridiculousness. Acting like they know they are full of crap with this outcome, it’s dumbed down to a patterned reveal like we’re about to see something never attempted before. Well, you have and with far greater authority and meaning. The actors have no sense of urgency and The Dark Hours just lumbers along with everyone involved unsure of how they fit into the whole hostage/terrorist-terrorist/hostage scenario. It’s a boring, anger-inducing excrement stain of a movie that will have you making a move out of your seat while the characters are still trying to figure out what to do. If you have a victim-off pitted between a blonde, big-breasted bimbo from central casting a d the threesome in this film – bet all-in on the bimbo. Like sitting through The Dark Hours, at least she will know when to get up and run.

link directly to this review at https://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=12514&reviewer=198
originally posted: 10/24/05 18:05:28
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2005 Fantasia Festival For more in the 2005 Fantasia Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2005 Chicago Film Festival For more in the 2005 Chicago Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2005 Vancouver Film Festival For more in the 2005 Vancouver Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2005 Boston Fantastic Film Festival For more in the 2005 Boston Fantastic Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

11/05/13 Jas Not as clever as it tries to be an needlessly gory, but haunting, fascinating, atmospheric 5 stars
7/19/09 Carlos Idelone I liked that the whole scenario took place in the lead character's mind. 4 stars
11/07/06 Ozcan Filiz Truly Psycho-logic !! 4 stars
3/17/06 Indrid Cold Mildly interesting, but barely worth the time. 2 stars
3/04/06 PapaMaria Pretends to be smart by confusing you 2 stars
2/19/06 TheManFromDelmonté A great Movie! This is what you want from a psychological thriller. 5 stars
2/19/06 Robert Frost Take any road but this movie 1 stars
11/14/05 Jennifer Bebe I loved this creepy, slow burn thriller 5 stars
10/10/05 Liz Fox Fantastic directing,acting,editing, music. Awesome. 5 stars
10/06/05 Max Very Good, Well Done Low budget movie, there was some tension not a must see But I'ts good! 4 stars
7/20/05 Sugar Malone Smart, creepy and a great ride from beginning to end 5 stars
7/15/05 Dennis Dark And Twisted...A Must See 5 stars
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  13-Oct-2005 (R)
  DVD: 07-Feb-2006



Directed by
  Paul Fox

Written by
  Wil Zmak

  Kate Greenhouse
  Aidan Devine
  Gordon Currie
  Iris Graham
  Dov Tiefenbach
  David Calderisi

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