Dark Light (2019)

This was not a good movie. It’s not one of those incredibly bad movies that wraps back around to “I have to show all my friends,” but it’s also not so boring that I contemplate suicide like an Ulli Lommel movie. It’s more like it had potential, but between bad acting and a premise that falls apart if you actually think about it, it just fails. A solid two out of five film.

We open with a mother being arrested for shooting her ex-husband and the supposed disappearance of her daughter. Through flashbacks we discover that the ladies moved to a farm, and shortly after strange things started happening: weird scratching noises, super bright lights in the cornfield, and a humanoid shape lurking in the house. Makes you think that maybe this is an alien movie, but it’s not. The daughter gets grabbed, and we’re back in the present with the mother being driven to prison. After a convoluted escape, she tries to get help from a local monster hunter who betrays her astonishingly quickly. There’s also a sheriff and the ex-husband shows back up, but they don’t really matter. The lights and shapes are revealed to be a race of subterranean cyclopses who suck energy out of people with their TV screen-sized eyes. They also have fangs and sharp teeth for… reasons. The mom rescues the daughter, everyone else dies, and the monster dies when the house is set on fire. A happy ending, except for the reminder that there are more monsters out there.

No one was a good actor in this. The sheriff and daughter are especially bad, mostly due to their extremely flat delivery of just about every line. The ex-husband cheated on our protagonist when she was having a nervous breakdown over her mother’s death, so the fact that he has a heroic sacrifice just feels… off. You’re an ass who threatened to take custody away; why should we care about you? And there’s an obvious trapdoor in the elevator that nobody checks when people disappear inside of it, so everyone is incredibly dumb.

And then there are the monsters! The lack of CGI for the costume is a great touch, marred slightly when it blinks near the end. But how have these things remained hidden for something like the entirety of human history? They shoot high beams out of their face and seemingly do it all the time. They also really love to open and close doors for no reason. And maybe they can teleport? They’re fast when toying with their prey, but slow as hell chasing after them, at one point even stumbling and crawling on all fours after the mom. An attempt was made, but the movie’s a mess. Doesn’t even out.

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