Super Dark Times follows a teen and his best friend who try to cope with the repercussions of a fatal accident they were involved in. While trying to keep the incident under wraps and carry on as normal, it is obvious that things aren't alright and that something more sinister may be brewing between the two friends.
Super Dark Times Review
I went into this movie blind, basing my jump into the unknown off of a recommendation from a Redditor. The over-hyped endorsement set the bar a bit too high for a movie I likely would recommend to others. But...it's not necessarily a movie I'd recommend to fans of pure horror. It's simply not that dark.
The best way to categorize this film is in the indie thriller vein, with a great deal of dark drama along the way. A good portion of the film is dedicated to the experiences of Zach (Owen Campbell) and his emotional struggle with the baggage associated with his indirect involvement with the incident, which was primarily the fault of his best friend Josh (Charlie Tahan - The Harvest, Burning Bright). The two have a once-strong bond that begins to unravel after the incident.
The balance of anxiety and paranoia over the situation is palpable. The two leads do a fantastic job of carrying you into a fairly realistic scenario. For a majority of the runtime you have doubts and fears instilled by Zach's character, as he tries to balance his home life, love life and big secret. It's like Juno 2: Juno Deals with a Murder.
The horror simply isn't there. We get glimpses in a dream sequence and towards the climax, but moments do not a horror film make. That isn't to talk down the film, but based on the recommendation, I was left a bit disappointed at the slowed progression and subtlety. Sure, The Witch proved you don't need buckets of blood and constant jump scares to qualify as horror, but this piece doesn't prove it even belongs in any relative genre for most of the runtime.
The characters/actors carry the story, and they do so effectively. I feel like I'm a teenager again, dealing with problems that feel so important and life-threatening...except in the case of these kids, there is literal life on the line. And the dating scene can suffer for it, I suppose.
This is a pretty good movie for a late night with a friend looking for something interesting and different. It feels like a different piece, exercising the weight of guilt in visceral ways. For that alone it is worth a watch. But make no mistake, this isn't horror. And that's okay.
Horror Qualifier: 5/10
Horror Quality: 4/10
Film Quality: 7/10