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Cast: Odette Yustman, Amber Heard, Karl Urban, Gia Mantegna, Adriana Barraza, Michel Noher, CÚsar Vianco, Luis Sabatini
Two American friends, Ellie (Odette Yustman) and Stephanie (Amber Heard), set out for a bike trip through Argentina, eager to explore its spectacular beauty. One afternoon, Stephanie disappears, and as darkness encroaches, so does Ellie's panic and desperation. Virtually alone in a foreign land, she wonders if either of them will get home alive.
A remake of the 1970 British thriller of the same name. The original is set in France and has two British females as the leads, whereas the remake is set in Argentina and has two American females as the leads. The term opposites attract could not be more true here, Stephanie is a quiet girl that likes to play it safe while Ellie is more the care-free party girl willing to take risks yet they are best friends. The two travel to Argentina and join a bike hike but after an hour with the rest of the pack the girls decide to spend their last day doing a little shopping, partying and flirting with the local men. Before the ladies head out for the night they are told the bus out leaves at 8AM and it is the only bus that day but after partying and having to get rescued by an American male from one of the locals Ellie got a little too close to they end up sleeping in and missing their bus. They decide to spend the day checking out a local waterfall and soaking up some sun but after a short time the two get into a little feud and Stephanie storms off on her bike. About halfway back she attempts to phone Ellie but gets no answer and when she runs into the same American again who helped the girls she decides to head back only to find Ellie is missing and evidence of a struggle. The film takes about 30 minutes to get to this point, it introduces us to the two ladies, some shaky locals and a foreign land that doesn't seem as friendly as it might look. After reporting to the local Police man that her friend is missing and seeing pictures of other missing girls on the wall at the station she realizes she isn't going to get any help there so she decides to go look for Ellie on her own, after meeting up with the American again who she suspects of being behind it all he tells her a friend of his went missing awhile back as well and the two decide to look together for the missing ladies. At around an hour in we find out where Ellie is and who has taken her and from there it not only becomes a fight for their lives but a pretty suspenseful thriller as well. Having never seen the original film I can't say if a remake was necessary or not but the film does mange to bring some good excitement and edge of your seat suspense with it with the last 20 minutes being a fast-paced thrill ride. Amber Heard and Odette Yustman are two of Hollywood's rising female stars and they are both terrific here as the two American women who make a few wrong decisions in a land where corruption runs wild. Karl Urban also gives a good performance here as the American man who has motives of his own. Early on the film did a good job at handing us a number of suspects while not giving away anything and Director, Marcos Efron kept the film moving at a nice pace until the action and suspense took over. The cinematography is fantastic, wide shots of the open land and run down buildings helps in setting the mood and atmosphere of being alone in a strange and dangerous place. I am going to have to search out the original film but in the mean time I can say if you like a good thriller this is one to check out, a great cast, interesting enough story and just the right amount of drama and suspense makes "And Soon the Darkness" an entertaining and heart pounding film that is sure to please most fans.
The film will have an exclusive Theatrical release in Los Angeles on December 17th before the DVD and Blu-ray debut on the 28th. Both will come with Special Features that include
Commentary featuring Director Marcos Efron, Editor Todd Miller and Director of Photography Gabriel Beristain
Director's Video Diary featuring Behind the Scenes footage from the set and the Trailer
Released by Anchor Bay Entertainment
*** 1/2 Out Of *****