Well. It had to happen eventually. The last couple movies I’d reviewed had all been decent, it was time once again to descend into madness and review yet another god-awful Uwe Boll film.
So, Alone in the Dark is in theory another videogame movie, much like the last Boll film I reviewed, The House of the Dead. And again, like the last Uwe Boll flick I saw, the connections are tenuous and really name-only. Anyway, if we’re going into hell like this, might as well be both feet first:
The Alone in the Dark series is sort of like Lovecraftian Resident Evil but with even worse mechanics and graphics. In the series, players play as down on his luck private eye Edward Carnby. Carnby ventures into a supposedly haunted mansion in order to find an antique piano but gets wrapped up in a paranormal and horrific ideal complete with all kinds of monsters and puzzles.
Later games in the series made Edward a paranormal investigator, but it was still semi-noirish and in the vein of Lovecraft. The movie also centers around a paranormal investigator named Edward Carnby, who was abandoned at birth, raised by nuns, given superpowers… and played by Christian Slater.
Carnby is part of a Government agency tasked with monitoring and investigating the paranormal, and especially a long-lost civilization called the Abkani. The Abkani were your standard run-of-the-mill lost civilization that disappeared mysteriously but left ominous paranormal prophecies. One such prophecy is about horrible creatures that thrive in the dark and can bring about the destruction of the world. Interestingly enough, they AREN’T talking about Christian Slater and his co-star Tara Reid.
So, I guess the movie tries to pay homage to the original videogame’s Noir influence. But Carnby’s voice-over is boring and entirely too divulging. It’s like Slater was told to just say exactly what he was doing at that moment in the film and why.
There’s little mystery, no one really advances the plot or discovers anything (it’s kind of just told to them), and we as the audience shouldn’t care in the least.
Eventually the whole thing boils down to a mad scientist, a prophecy, a big ‘ol pointless gunfight (Literally the last 37 minutes of the film), and a trite and aggravating cliffhanger that creates a plot hole big enough to stuff even Uwe Boll’s big head through.
I have to say that I sort of enjoy the design of the creatures. Of course, I enjoy them because they are largely a combination of the Xenomorphs from Alien and a panther (by the way, go out and pick up the video game Alien Isolation, and thank me for your nightmares/erections later).
Apparently there’s a whole dimension out there full of them and they just wait millennia until they can escape to our dimension to eat people.
These monsters (hell, they’re even called “Xenos” in the movie) can be easily killed by light, a fact that everybody in the film knows, but no one utilizes- though that might be because they’re only weak to light when the movie demands it. Sometimes any old light will do (a flashlight, for instance), sometimes it takes direct sunlight- such in that still up there, the monster’s totally cool chilling out directly in artificial light. And in the case of the movie’s ending- nothing fucking matters. Seriously. Long story short (if you’re concerned about spoilers for this film, fuck you), the Tara Reid and Christian Slater kill the mad scientist attempting to control the Xenos and blow up the portal to the monster’s home dimension. Everything turns out all cool and the two wind up together, because mediocrity attracts mediocrity, (lookin’ at you Chad Kroeger and Avril Lavigne). The heroes emerge to find the entire city abandoned and suddenly encounter one of the creatures… in broad daylight. Like, not even so much shade as a parasol.
She’s still surprised that they cancelled Taradise.
The movie is truly terrible.
Be sure to check out my other column Trope-ic Thunder, where I discuss science tropes in the media.
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