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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

[6.00/10] And Soon the Darkness (2010)

And Soon the Darkness (2010)

Set in Argentina, "And Soon the Darkness" tells the story of two girls on a bike-riding trip in a remote part of the country. When one of them goes missing, the other must find her before darkness falls and her worst fears are realized. In this remake of 1970 British thriller of the same name, a supposed-to-be fun and exotic vacation, turns into a surreal nightmare for Stephanie and Ellie, two beautiful best friends from America. The good news is, Marcos Efron's version of "And Soon the Darkness" is a fairly decent remake, shot with artistic flair and executed with precision. "And Soon the Darkness" is definitely a slow-burner, since almost nothing particularly interesting happens in the first half of the movie, as that part is used for developing the characters, and the 'nature' of Argentina. And although lacking in thrills and intensity, this first half of the film is never boring, thanks to the smooth pacing, sympathetic characters and some pretty nice visuals. The second half is a notch-better, as the story unfolds more dynamically, and this is where all the action takes place. The ending is tad predictable and not very original, but it feels appropriate for the realistic subject matter. The acting, though not this film's main strength, is passable for the most part. Amber Heard is particualrly impressive. Her physical similarity to Keira Knightley is visible, but this stunning beauty never works against her, as she delivers an above average and very believable performance as Stephanie - the sensible and good-looking girl, determined to find and save her best friend. Odette Yustman, on the other hand, gives a pretty mediocre performance as the spoiled and reckless Ellie, as she shows almost no acting skills, but only relies on her prettiness. Moreover, her character is so annoying most of the time, you hardly care if she will be saved or not. Karl Urban feels very appropriate for the role he's given, and he gives his best in portraying his character. César Vianco is downright creepy as the dubious local policeman, and Adriana Barraza is very convincing as the hotel hostess. "And Soon the Darkness" makes a pretty good impression, visually, due to the absolutely gorgeous scenery of Argentinian country side, the exotic locations and some stunning and pretty artsy shots by Marcos Efron, who put all his creativity into delivering a visually-captivating remake, that never fails to engage the audience with its beauty. Although "And Soon the Darkness" is rather slow-moving and genuinely thrill-free, it succeeds in delivering a believable story, accompanied with a couple of decent performances and some truly aesthetic visuals.


Unknown said...

Amber Heard was hilarious in Zombieland, chasing Jesse Eisenberg around and I just caught her in a rerun of an episode of Criminal Minds. I will definitely be checking this film out.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Yes, she was :) I was actually surprised how good she was in this one. You should definitely check this one out, Melissa. The best thing is, there's absolutely nothing exaggerated about it.

Jaccstev said...

Watched this one just last night. I'm agree the cinematography is good and sceneries are strikingly beautiful. I only have problem with its plain cliche stupid characters who seemingly always made the stupiddest decisions or acts.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

I didn't find Amber's character to be plain and cliched at all - if she acted stupidly, it was due to her confusion, panic and desperation.
As for Odette, well yes, she was pretty flat.