|© 2005-2010 by C. E. Murphy. All Rights Reserved.
I can’t really think of an artistically successful feature film adapted
from a video game, yet movie studios in their ever increasing bid for
cash and engagement in corporate synergy continue to churn them out.
ALONE IN THE DARK, a rather depressing, noisome and misguided
effort, now joins the list.
Right from the start when a portentous voice intones a narration that
scrolls across the screen, audiences are invited to laugh along with this
waste of celluloid. One can only think that Christian Slater and Stephen
Dorff needed quick cash for mortgage payments or back taxes or
something to justify their participation in this inept and awful movie.
The narration speaks of a long-lost Native American tribe called the
Abskani who were into worshipping some sort of demon. Now at the
dawn of the 21st Century, the evil creatures, which turn out to look like a
cross between Alien and Predator, are set to return and take over the
Slater is cast as Edward Carnby, a “detective of the paranormal” and
survivor of some sort of fiendish plot involving mad scientists, orphans
and that lost Native American culture. A low rent Indiana Jones, he
recently came into possession of an artifact linked to this lost
culture. Naturally, this means that he’ll be pursued by a guy out to steal
the thing from him.
The guy chasing Slater looks like a reject from the World Wrestling
Federation and seems impervious to everything, including bullets. He
chases Slater around a marketplace, so that hack director Uwe Bolle
can stage a series of increasingly ludicrous set pieces. And that’s just
the opening scenes; from there, the film only spirals out of control. The
audience is then introduced to the villain, Professor Lionel Hudgens,
portrayed by Mathew Walker in a performance that would be on par with
those in an Ed Wood opus. By the time Tara Reid makes her appearance
as the brainy assistant to a museum curator, all credulity is lost.
ALONE IN THE DARK is an unmitigated disaster. I’ve tended to avoid
junk like this as my time is too precious to waste, but I got suckered.
For your sake, I hope you don’t.
MPAA rating: R for violence and language
Running time: 96 mins.