Alone in the Dark’ Review
13 years ago Stewart Smith Comments Off on Alone in the Dark’ Review
“”Alone in the Dark is the latest overture by Uwe Boll, a German director with an affinity for video game properties. His first American film was an “adaptation” of the classic arcade game “House of the Dead.” Taken on its own, “House of the Dead” had quite an amount of potential. Boll discarded that in favor of reckless teenagers on an island and cinematography that rips off “The Matrix” every other scene.
Boll’s destruction of perfectly enjoyable video game fodder continues with “Alone in the Dark.” The source material has paranormal investigator Edward Carnby investigating creepy and suitably scary locales solo, hence the title. The film, however, once again displays Boll’s utter incompetence and lack of respect for source material in just about every aspect.
Carnby (played by an apprehensive Christian Slater who seems to realize just how stupid this movie as it progresses) is still a paranormal investigator, though it seems that he was once subject to some kind of questionable scientific experiments. These were performed by a mad scientist, er…”professor,” named Hudgens (Matthew Walker).
Hudgens, it seems, is obsessed with the ancient Abkani, a race of people who sealed up a deadly evil (read: really, really poor CGI monsters who look like mutated velociraptors). Joining him in his research is Aline (played by perpetual party girl Tara Reid), curator of a museum and also a scientist, though this is only evidenced by the fact that she carries a clip board, sports thick, black glasses, and wears her hair in a tightly wrapped knot.
Hudgens has discovered the sunken treasure chest that houses these monsters and before he can do anything about it, these monsters are unleashed upon humanity. However, Hudgens’ earlier attempts to keep them from being released are inexplicably negated when he later is revealed to be encouraging the monsters’ activities. This is one of the many mistakes and unexplained items that Boll perpetuates.
Also included in this list is any kind of explanation or back story for the paranormal attack squad 713, led by the perpetually scowling Burke (Stephen Dorff) whose only purpose in the film seems to be to curse, snarl, and yell for more men to get on the scene. Carnby, it seems, was once a part of this group, though that is also left on the wayside in place of tepid action sequences, useless slow-motion shots and quite possibly the most pointless and laughable love scene ever filmed.
Let’s just put it this way. This is one of the worst movies ever put to film. Everything from the script to the sets to the special effects and especially the acting is all so horrible it’s not even watchable. Boll is content to rip off other directors at every turn (he steals shots from Tarantino, the Wachowski Brothers with no remorse). How this guy keeps acquiring properties is absolutely beyond me. “House of the Dead” was at least campy and stupid enough to merit a few chuckles from time to time.
Even if you sneak in the theater to see this one for free, I guarantee you’ll come out demanding the theater pay you five bucks for the time wasted.