The Dark Is Rising details
|Starring:||Drew Tyler Bell, Frances Conroy, James Cosmo, Wendy Crewson, Mark Donovan, Christopher Eccleston, Edmund Entin, Gary Entin|
|Director:||David L. Cunningham|
|Genres:||Action/Adventure, Family, Sci-Fi/Fantasy - Fantasy - General|
|Studio:||20TH CENTURY FOX HOME ENTERTAINMENT|
The Dark Is Rising
|Run time:||1 hour 39 minutes|
|Rental release:||10 Mar 2008|
Most helpful review
A franchise fails before it startsBy Vivacia (28 reviews) from London , 20 Dec 2007
[Highly rated reviewer]With the approaching end of the Harry Potter franchise (assuming that JK Rowling doesn't suddenly write another book based in Hogwarts) Hollywood is definitely on the look out for the next 'Potter'. 'The Dark is Rising' is one such hopeful, being based on the second part of a five book fantasy series, that was originally published in the 1960s and 1970s.
Will Stanton is fast approaching his 14th birthday, and is struggling with the all the usual issues, not least of which is his crush on one of the older girls at school. But his life becomes far more complicated when he starts seeing strange patterns on normal objects around him and is pursued by a dark ominous figure on horseback. Demanding that Will hand over 'the signs' Will is in real danger until four of the village locals appear and chase off the figure. These individuals turn out to be time travellers, known as the 'Old Ones' and they tell Will that he is 'the Seeker', the seventh son of a seventh son, and must find six 'signs' before the Rider's power comes to it's full, otherwise darkness will sweep the lands forever.
A major problem with 'The Dark Is Rising' is that the story, though in itself interesting, is played out in such a dull and predictable way that it's hard to get a great deal of enjoyment from it. It doesn't take a great deal of thought to work out exactly what is going to happen, so when it does occur you're left with an empty, hollow feeling. Those words in fact ring true for most aspects of the film, as the acting is also 'empty' and 'hollow' more often than not. Christopher Eccleston seems to be enjoying himself, and it's nice to see Ian McShane doing something other than Deadwood but Alexander Ludwig (Will Stanton) is incredibly uncharismatic in the lead.
There were reports on this film's release that the writer of the books, Susan Cooper, was unhappy with the interpretation of her works, and seeing this it's not hard to see why. It's saving graces are few, though it's certainly far from being the worst film ever made. Some of the set pieces are very good (watch out for the security guards in the shopping centre) and overall it isn't a bad story, with some nice twists (though if you're over 8 you'll see them coming a mile away). This is worth a watch if you like fantasy films, and go into it without expectations. But don't expect the next Harry Potter - Hollywood's still working on that one.
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Did you have to?By GeorgeH (1 review) , 12 Nov 2012A complete mess of a film.
Like many other reviewers, I watched this because of memories of Susan Cooper's eerily haunting book series of the same name- only to find out the makers managed somehow to make a sow's ear out of a silk purse. Thanks.
If you haven't read the books, don't bother to watch this film. It is confused dross, as if the makers didn't really understand the film they were trying to make. It rather reminded me of a friend at school who tried to pass off an episode of the TV series McGyver as his own creative writing, with hideous results.
Calling this the 'The Dark is Rising' is a total lie.By Oleta (2 reviews) , 28 Oct 2012This was such a disappointment. I have loved the Susan Cooper 'Dark is Rising' series since childhood, and have read them to my own children. This film has nothing to do with the book at all. I'm not a purist, I know that film is a different media to a novel and some things have to change, but this film has NOTHING to do with the book. It changes vital plot-points, in fact more than this, it isn't the same plot at all. It invents a twin that didn't exist, completely contorts the importance and purpose of Will's powers, the plot is just completely different. You might just as accurately say 'Oliver!' is a film version of 'Eastenders' or that 'Madagascar' is a film of 'Born Free'. This is awful, a complete mess, which manages to extinguish all the thrilling magic and menace of the original story, losing the interweaving of old English myth. It is painfully bad. The only good thing in it is Christopher Eccleston's all too brief appearances.
Hollywood is desperately searching for another Harry Potter, they saw this series as a possible contender, and certainly if you've read the books that is a definite possibility, but they tinkered with the story so much, they lost it's essence. They killed it.
My advice to you: Don't waste your time on this dross, buy the book.
Great for All!By a customer , 24 Oct 2012The Dark is Rising was enjoyed by everyone in the family. Suspence and a different storyline but the usual good vs evil. It would definitely be recommended!
OK, but nothing special...By SiSlayRD500 (132 reviews) from Solihull , 17 May 2012Even though this has been out for years I watched for the first time last night! For me it was OK, but nothing special.
It's maybe worth a look if you like fantasy / kids / light hearted types of film, but don't expect anything too great! - I like a lot of these types of film, but I think this is definitely more suited to a younger audience.
More dark neededBy DizzzieLizzie (2 reviews) , 24 Nov 201110 year old: I give it 5 stars, because it was very good but the boy could have had more powers.
47 year old mum: I give it 4 stars because my son enjoyed it but I thought Christopher Ecclestone was not very good (tho I do like him as an actor) - not scary enough. I don't think the suspense built up enough (started well) but then it all seemed to be bit too easy.