THE DARKEST DAWN

PrintE-mail Written by Jennifer Drewett

It would appear to many film audiences that there is a set formula to getting a film made and released. It starts with an idea whether it’s a continuation of a franchise, a remake or an original story then progresses into casting and hiring people after gaining investment from a variety of companies or shareholders if you’re already part of a company. Your final product won’t be quite like the first draft of the script but you’ll get there and hopefully your big name cast will be able to draw audiences in to make as big a profit as possible upon release in countless cinemas across the land. That has been the way of the film industry for many years and it’s a system that has worked for big studios for years. Some of the same people working together to create products that make profit. With the dawn of the digital age and the growing popularity of YouTube, this could all change. This is what the people behind The Darkest Dawn may be hoping for. They’ve opted to eschew the traditional means of distribution and exhibition by hosting a public premiere at London MCM on Sunday then releasing the film on digital download the following day. The creative minds behind this project include YouTube stars Drew Casson, Cherry Wallis, Stuart Ashen, and Bethan Leadley backed by Wildseed Productions. It remains to be seen whether this method proves profitable but regardless this could be the start of a new way to bring the films of new talent into the British film industry.

The Darkest Dawn tells the story of two teenage girls trying to survive an alien apocalypse in a style akin to The Blair Witch Project. It’s quite easy to feel somewhat sceptical about the film considering all of the Blair Witch and Paranormal Activity knock-offs that have plagued cinematic history over the past 15 years. The Darkest Dawn is not one of them. The plot uses the almost clichéd found footage style of filming to bring an interesting narrative told in a perspective often ignored: an innocent sixteen-year-old girl who uses her camera as a means to cope with her ongoing trauma. It’s refreshing to see a plot from writers willing to toy with their characters and the audiences in a way that makes you question who’ll survive minute by minute. This is aided by the acting by all of the cast in a way that would win over even the most cynical audience members. Their dedication to the project and the use of an acting coach really pays off to bring an entertaining and gripping piece.

A film that has to be seen to be believed, The Darkest Dawn is a great follow-up to Hungerford that works wonderfully as a standalone movie. More importantly, Wildseed Productions could end up becoming part of a revolution in the film industry that gives aspiring filmmakers a way to nurture their talent and bring films needed in the cinematic world.

THE DARKEST DAWN / CERT: 15 / DIRECTOR: DREW CASSON / SCREENPLAY: JESS CLEVERLY, DREW CASSON / STARRING: BETHANY MARY LEADLEY, CHERRY WALLIS, STUART ASHEN, DREW CASSON / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW


 


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