And Soon the Darkness (2010)
and soon the darkness | marcos efron | jennifer derwingson | amber heard | odette annable | karl urban | remake | kidnap | crime | mystery | thriller | united states | argentina | france | adriana barraza | César Vianco | cesar vianco | michel noher | gia mantegna
Film: And Soon the Darkness
Director: Marcos Efron
Writer: Jennifer Derwingson and Marcos Efron
Starring: Amber Heard, Odette Annable and Karl Urban
This film starts showing us a woman that is tied up. The room is dark and she is dirty. The woman is Gia Mantegna. A man comes in and uses a couple of electrified wires to get her to be quiet. She passes out.
We then shift three months later and in Argentina. We have two young women riding their bikes on a road. They are Amber Heard and Odette Annable. They are on vacation and we learn they were on a tour, but decided to go on their own. Heard is the more responsible one who is hung up on her ex-boyfriend that cheated on her. Annable is all about having fun and is slightly wild.
They get to a small village and check into the hotel there. The woman that runs it is Adriana Barraza. She asks for their passports and there is a funny scene where Annable gives her over and she has the P on passport blocked off with a sticker. They are shown to their room by the man working there.
Annable showers and they head to the local bar. They order some beers and Annable lets some of the guys know that Heard is single. A guy orders them some shots of tequila and they start to cut loose. Another American, Karl Urban, strolls into the bar and catches Heard’s eye. Annable sees this and wants her to go talk to him. She goes over to the jukebox and unplugs it. She then puts on ‘I Touch Myself’ and puts on a performance. She sees Urban go to the bathroom and puts herself out there. He ignores the advance. She then sits with Michel Noher.
Heard realizes her friend is missing and goes outside. She finds Annable and Noher kissing. Heard heads back to the room and Annable brings Noher there as well. They continue what they were doing outside, but when she tries to end it, he gets a little forceful. Heard comes out to stop it as well as Urban. Noher finally gets the hint and leaves. The two women are supposed to be up for an 8:30 am bus, but during the confrontation, their alarm clock gets unplugged. They oversleep and miss the bus.
The two try to find out what they should do and inquire about a resort like thing nearby. Barraza steers them from there and to go to a waterfalls instead. The two women decide to go there. They lay out in the sun. Heard wakes up and tells Annable that they need to head out. She is still hungover and doesn’t want to do anything, telling her to relax. The two end up in a fight and Heard leaves.
She gets down the road a ways and starts to feel bad. Annable also wakes up again and texts her friend, apologizing. Heard starts to head back and runs into Urban. He asks about Annable and tells her that she shouldn’t leave her friend alone.
Annable gets up and she is attacked. She tries to flee, but doesn’t get far. She is taken. Heard and Urban show up, but only find her phone. There is some blood on the ground that Urban notices. Heard then calls the police and it turns out to be César Vianco. He isn’t very helpful and just fills out a report. He thinks her friend will show back up.
Heard isn’t so sure. She starts to look around for her friend, but the problem is that she doesn’t understand the language. She also becomes distrustful of Urban after finding a bracelet in his stuff that is similar to the one that Annable had. Is Urban involved? Can she find Noher for answers? Is he involved? Who all is in this small village and where is Annable? Is she still alive?
I was turned on to this film after watching the original and seeing the case for this one when I worked at Family Video. What is really unnerving about the original one is that it is two British women who are on vacation in France and they don’t understand the language. This one plays on that with two American women in Argentina with having the most basic knowledge of Spanish. It is scary to go to a village like this, being stuck and not knowing who is involved and who isn’t. Even those that aren’t involved do not get the help they need as they are strangers. Human trafficking is also something that is explored in this film that is very real and very scary, especially for women. I could believe that in the heat of an argument the two friends could do what these two do, making what happens after very believable. I do feel that the film kind of loses some of its momentum though in the climax, which did disappointment me a bit. I did like the showdown of Heard, Urban and Vianco. I also didn’t buy that Heard, as responsible as she is, wouldn’t notice that the alarm clock was unplugged when she finally went to sleep. I get that it is a plot device, but I found it to be weak.
The acting in this film is pretty solid. I am a big fan of Heard and I thought she did a good job in her performance of this film. I have a big crush on her and find her beautiful. I also really liked Annable. I haven’t seen her in a lot, but I thought she did a believable wild girl and she also looks great. Urban was pretty solid in his performance. I do find it a little odd that he waits so long to reveal his reason for being there and I thought it would make more sense for him to share it earlier. I get the film does it to build suspense, but with what is going on, it isn’t realistic. I also thought Vianco and Noher were both pretty good as well.
There aren’t a lot in the way of effects for this film, but it really doesn’t need it. The film is based more on the story. The ones that are used looked to be practical and were well done. The editing of the film was solid for the most part, but I do feel that the film loses some of the momentum leading up to the climax and the payoff was lacking a little bit to me. It just feels like that the film loses itself during the investigation aspect. The score doesn’t really stand out to me. I did like the use of the song ‘I Touch Myself’, as I thought Annable looked great and her performance during it was hot.
Now with that said, I would recommend seeing this film. I think the original was slightly better, but this one is still an above average film. You don’t need to see the original to enjoy this film. I thought it had a good story and concept. The two leads are gorgeous and do a solid job in acting. Urban and the other supports were good as well. The editing did have some slight issues to me. What little effects that were used were good. The score doesn’t hurt or add much to the film. It is a scary idea of being kidnapped, but even more so going to a different country where you don’t speak the language makes it worse. The film is entertaining and worth a viewing in my opinion.
My Rating: 7 out of 10