“Super Dark Times” Does Everything but Stick the Landing



Title: Super Dark Times
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Posted December 29, 2017 by

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Zach and Josh have been friends their whole life. They watch scrambled porn together while picking out who they’d sleep with in their year books, they practically live at each other’s houses, and they both have a crush on the same girl. They are your typical teenage boys: impressed at their own ability to use swear words while also having a childlike wonder and amazement when it comes to the outside world. When they and two of their friends decide to take Josh’s older brother’s sword out to chop some thing down, an unlikely mistake causes one of them to lose their life and leaves the other three trying to keep a secret that only torments them more with each passing day.

From the get-go, Zach begins to show signs of crumbling under the pressure. The guilt of what happened and what they did afterwards is almost too much for him to handle; causing his personal relationships to suffer while he tries to figure out what to do while also letting the situation possibly handle itself. Josh, on the other hand, just stops going outside. He stops going to school, he stops talking to Zach, he just stops existing for a moment. When he finally does reappear, the secret both boys share has driven a wedge between them that is apparent to anyone that shares the same space as the them. When another kid from their class winds up dead, Zach feels it’s a trend that is only going to get worse; that the one person who he knew better than anyone else may now be a blood-thirsty stranger to him.

“Super Dark Times” boasts a strong script from writers Ben Collins and Luke Piotrowski. They are able to blend mystery, violence, and teenage angst into one solid story that, while being the extreme of a situation, isn’t something too far off from anything any of us could have lived through had we made one bad choice. The only thing they needed to do to make this movie a must-see was an ending that felt right. Unfortunately I wasn’t the biggest fan of how they wrapped up what was an otherwise strong showing. It’s not that it was bad, or out of place, it’s just that I invested time into these characters and I felt I didn’t get any of the answers I was looking for. Is Josh actually killing people? Is Zach imagining everything because he’s losing his mind? I don’t need the film to do all of the work for me, but maybe push me in the right direction so I don’t just have to assume what ended up going down.

I loved the acting from the young leads. Owen Campbell (Zach) carries a lot of the heavy load and does a great job while doing it; reminding me much of Lou Taylor Pucci. Charlie Tahan as well, who I first became aware of in Netflix’s “Ozark“, plays that perfect balance of mentally stable and completely off the rails. He adds this nervous energy just below the surface that amps up the tension in this film.

I would definitely recommend checking this movie out. Especially if you’re a fan of original, independent films that go against the kind of storytelling we are all used to. As I mentioned, everything is done so well, I just wish that the ending could have brought everything home. Maybe it’s better it didn’t. Maybe that would have cheapened the rest of the movie. You just never know I guess so it all comes down to personal taste.




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