Dark City

January 28, 2012 3 Min Read

Review by: Matt Brighton

Plot: What’s it about?

Hard to say, it took a while for me to figure it out…But here goes. In somewhat of a comparison to “The Matrix”, that’s what this is. However, this movie came out first, so I guess “The Matrix” would be more like this. Both share what would seem to be the idea that “the world isn’t what it seems”.

Strange beings named (aptly enough) “The Strangers” float around a seemingly endless night entrounced city (Dark City). When a clock strikes Midnight, all of the city’s inhabitants stop or drop in their tracks and “sleep”. It is during this time that The Strangers rebuild the city.

John Murdoch (Rufus Sewell) has awakened to find himself naked, in a bathtub with amnesia. He learns, through different sources that he is wanted for murder. But the catch is that was him before he had amnesia. Confusing. It seems Murdoch is immune to the “sleep” spell that happens every night and wonders what is going on. Also, planted throughout the film are hints to a strange place called “Shell Beach” (hence the game on the DVD).

With a great supporting cast including William Hurt (Det. Frank Bumstead), Kiefer Sutherland (Dr. Daniel Poe Schreber) and Jennifer Connelley (Emma Murdoch) take this movie to a higher level. Whereas it’s hard to reveal the plot without giving away the ending…it seems that The Strangers are attempting to learn what human nature is like by injecting (literally) other people’s memories into the city’s inhabitants. So, it’s possible that you could have been a milkman or a hotel manager in a “past life”.

Great special effects, a curiously original plot and a disc full of extras make this one to watch (maybe even twice).

Video: How does it look?

Earning it’s namesake, this movie is probalby one of the “darkest” that I’ve seen, right up there with “The Game” and “The Crow” (which was also directed by Alex Proyas). The 16:9 enhancement is amazing on this disc. I never saw one singal artifact, black were black and fleshtones were very natrual. One of teh best “literal” pictures that I have seen.

Audio: How does it sound?

Dark City has a great soundtrack. There are also plenty of explosions and background noise to keep all your speakers busy throughout. Awesome!

Supplements: What are the extras?

This disc is loaded. The “Shell Beach” game alone (which I have yet to figure out) is worth it, along with two commentaries (one by Roger Ebert) and the other with the director. There also fully animated menus, set designs, trailers…

Disc Scores