Super Dark Times (2017)

Snowy or rainy days are moody and great to stay home curled up with a coffee, hot chocolate, or beverage of your choice watching films. What I just wrote is an example of “setting” and it works powerfully in Super Dark Times. The question I will answer in this review is: “Does it work well enough?”

This is what you see 80% of the runtime

Not Rated | 1h 40min | Drama, Thriller | 29 September 2017 (USA)

Teenagers Zach and Josh have been best friends their whole lives, but when a gruesome accident leads to a cover-up, the secret drives a wedge between them and propels them down a rabbit hole of escalating paranoia and violence.
Director: Kevin Phillips
Writers: Ben Collins (co-writer), Luke Piotrowski (co-writer)
Stars: Owen Campbell, Charlie Tahan, Elizabeth Cappuccino

In preparing for this review I watched and reviewed Mean Creek with Josh Peck in a surprisingly good serious role. Someone said they were similar movies. I actually think the Peck film is better because it doesn’t play tricks on you, it just “is what it is.” The third act of Super Dark Times has some plot and character issues. So much in fact that I started losing interest. I rarely lose interest in 3rd acts. The lame at best, predictable at worst ending is satisfying enough but I felt let down by this film.

Kevin Phillips is a new director and I applaud him for the moody New England look of the film. After that, I thought all the males were substandard for the movie and they really brought it down. The females did great acting work and helped make the situations believable. Screaming, bleeding, and breaking things are really the only parts of this film that flesh out these characters. I truly enjoy mood and cinematography in a film but it should go in concert with a simple story that plays out, credits to credits rather than one that makes you work until you literally get a headache. All the cool photography in the world can’t compete with ibuprofen there. It had some good parts, and I look forward to what Kevin Phillips does in the coming years. This one didn’t do it for me.


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