We’ve seen some generic horror movies in our time but Dark Skies takes the biscuit. Director Scott Stewart – much like his otherworldly visitors – pilfers, plagiarizes and poaches from every source at his disposal. Dark Skies will most likely hold your interest for 97 minutes but it walks a fine line between apathy and curiosity.
Lacy (Russell) and Daniel (Hamilton) are struggling financially but a series of unexplained events are about to give them something else to think about. Their son Jesse (Goyo) is particularly disturbed by events taking place, and with the police and authority figures unable to help, Lacy, Daniel and their family are drawn towards a supernatural explanation.
With flocks of birds flying into the house and ghostly figures stalking the children, it’s hard to imagine anybody sticking around, but Lacy and Daniel put their family at risk repeatedly, refusing to believe that things have gone to hell. Russell is fine and Hamilton does grow on you, but Goyo (Real Steel) is the saving grace. Youngest son Sam gets to spout out the ‘creepy’ dialogue, but Jesse is the only rounded character. By the time J.K. Simmons turns up you’ll wish you were the one being abducted.
Gloomy, despairing and lacking invention, Dark Skies is certainly a fitting title. Borrowing heavily from vastly superior offerings, Stewart’s horror tinged sci-fi – maybe that should read sci-fi tinged horror – does nothing to distance itself from the crowd. Having your mind wiped by extraterrestrials might be the way to go after all. AW