7.29.2012

407 DARK FLIGHT 3D (2012) Review


Directed by: Isara Nadee
Starring: Marsha Wattanapanich, Peter Knight, Patcharee Tubthong

DARK FLIGHT is a horror film from Thailand, something which I haven't experienced much of before. It also happens to be Thailand's first movie to be filmed in stereoscopic 3D. The question I had before viewing was "are they going to exploit the 3D label by having those cheap 'shit flying towards the screen just because it can' scenes? Or are they going to utilize the 3D to add an extra layer of depth? Well it turns out that they decided to do neither. Apart from a couple of short scenes I didn't really see any need for the 3D at all.


DARK FLIGHT follows a rather small group of people travelling on a flight out of Thailand. The group are a varied bunch and include a handful of flight attendants, a dreadlocked backpacker, a clueless girl from Hong Kong, an elderly woman with a fear of flying, a Buddhist monk, a maintenence man and a small family consisting of a bitchy mother, her submissive husband and their daughter - a girl who 'just so happens' to enjoy playing a flight simulator game on her iPad (you can already work out what's going to happen can't you?). There are a few other less important characters as well.
The flight takes off and everything is going fine until a couple of the passengers start seeing strange things. One man has a sudden EXORCIST moment and soon everybody on board realizes that shit just ain't right.


Between the ghosts, hallucinations, possessions and other strange phenomena we don't really get a clear idea of why all of this crap is happening. Then about an hour into the movie one of the flight attendants New (Wattanapanich) escorts us through a brief flashback scene which explains that she was once on a flight where the passengers went berserk and she was the only survivor. Could this be the same plane? Well of course it is! So as shit goes from bad to worse and people start dropping like flies it's up to New, Bank (Knight), Gift (Tubthong) and friends to try and save the day.


DARK FLIGHT follows a fairly simple story but it suffers from some bad pacing and it's not until more than halfway through that we get a clear sense of exactly what's going on. The characters are a bunch of clich├ęs (a super effeminate male flight attendant etc) who spend most of their time whining or screaming or running.
Thankfully the movie at least looks good (well for the most part). The practical effects and ghost designs range from badass to average while the CGI is kind of cheap and nasty. The atmosphere is suitably dark and panicky but alas these positives were not enough to outweigh all of the negatives and so DARK FLIGHT ends up being pretty mediocre indeed.





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