DARK SKIES Blu-ray Review
I missed Dark Skies in the theaters and am thankful that I did. I was hoping for something more from the producers of Insidious. What I got was a film ruined by the trailers and featurettes. There are too many movies that have been ruined by the trailers, and I felt like I had seen all of the scary moments before I actually saw them. There are a few moments that were not spoiled, but they do not add up to surpass what was ruined.
Directed by Scott Charles Stewart the film stars Keri Russell, Dakota Goyo, Josh Hamilton, Annie Thurman, J.K. Simmons, and Trevor St. John. The film follows Lacy and Daniel Barrett (Russell and Hamilton) who have fallen on hard times since Daniel has lost his job. On top of that they are having to deal with some strange and unsettling occurrences at night. What begins as the kitchen being rearranged or pictures being taken from their frames in the middle of the night turns into much more devious occurrences. Jesse (Goyo) and his brother are scared, and this has caused the family to be on edge.
The police don’t believe them and are unable to help. The family is drawn deeper into a never-ending nightmare of paranormal events. After some research they find a paranormal expert (J.K. Simmons), who informs them, there may not be much they can do to avoid the paranormal entities. Everyone is losing control, and they are starting to think that the whatever is haunting their family is inside them. Will the family fully lose control, and be consumed by the spirits or will they overcome the dark entities trying to rule their lives. To find out, you will have to watch the Blu-ray.
This micro-budget film only cost $3.5 million to shoot and raked in $23.4 million at the box office. One thing that Dark Skies has going for it is that they did a lot for the measly budget. Despite practically non-existent special effects, the film maintains an ominous tone with the help of lighting and creepy music.
I was not a fan of Felicity, so I have not had much experience with Kerri Russell, so Dark Skies may not be the best representation of her abilities. Lucas has not been in much lately, so it was nice to see him in this role. J.K, Simmons seems to be taking whatever work he can after The Closer. At least this is a film role, and not another insurance commercial. Dakota Goyo has grown a lot in a short time since starring in Reel Steal. He is the real star of the film, and did a good job of showing his range.
Dark Skies was shot digitally and looks great in 1080p. The color tones are muted and look as if they were filtered through Instagram. As I mentioned earlier, the sounds help set the creepy tone of the film. This is helped immensely by the 5.1 DTS surround track. One of the only issues that I notice on a lot of Blu-ray’s is that the scenes with a lot of dialogue are low, but the scenes with a lot of action are too loud.
The special features are nothing impressive on this Blu-ray. Anchor Bay has included the following special features:
- Feature Commentary with Writer/Director Scott Steward, Producer Jason Blum, Executive Producer Brian Kavanaugh-Jones and Editor Peter Gvozdas
- Alternate & Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary – This is basically 14 minutes of wasted time. The deleted scenes were deleted for a reason, and the alternate scenes are extensions of the other scenes. Skip this special feature on the disc.
Dark Skies is available on Blu-ray and DVD on May 28. If you are looking for a mildly scary film that is not another found-footage flick, then this is a decent option.