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The Dark Military

The Dark Military is an indie horror film written and directed by Loren W. Lepre who also plays one of the main roles. It's from Average Superstar Films, and is Lepre's feature-length directorial debut aside from a music documentary he has also directed. The Dark Military is about a new Halloween PPV show called "Survival Ground" which actually turns out to be somewhat of a kidnapping/catch and release sort of Hunger Games/Battle Royale scenario in which the unwilling contestants who think they are participating in an internet Halloween show are taken to a field in a bus full of beer, and then told that they must survive for 2 hours after giving them a one-minute head start. What we liked: The game show/PPV concept is a fun idea. Alex Vincent made a cameo appearance. The acting was pretty decent for the most part. A good amount of the main cast had some prior experience. The cinematography wasn't bad. What could have been better: The writing. There were a lot of moments that just didn't make sense. The characters all had a decent amount of screentime being sort of developed but were all irrelevant for the most part. The time spent on this could have been used better. Perhaps on different ways of killing them. This was a case where these characters get killed off really quickly for the most part, so the character development didn't need to be that thorough. This film is called The Dark Military, which implies that this film has something to do with the military, but there is no military. "The Dark Military" turns out to be five people wearing ski masks with meat cleavers and nicknames like "Jezebel" "Kane", "Judas" "Mother Nature" and "Barabbas". They say that "The General" told them to do this, but that could mean anything. Seems like the film could have been called something more relevant like "Survival Ground". There were a lot of people who signed up for the PPV event, and they were all pretty dumb. They could have spent some more time on the killers. If you are going to make it about a handful of people slaughtering 20+ people in two hours, make it interesting. Why did they just have meat cleavers? Why not use some more imagination, and focus more on the killers? And most of the kills aren't really shown on-screen. With a bit of effort, they could have come up with some better kill scenes without spending too much money. There were some sound issues and inconsistencies. Overall, The Dark Military is a decent concept and had some good but also some bad qualities that unfortunately overshadow the good in some areas. It has decent cinematography, but there were sound issues in some scenes. It has decent acting, but that is overshadowed by the script needing some work and acting can only be as good as the script. It has character development, but the wrong group of characters was developed. It has a high kill count, but everyone was only using a knife or meat cleaver and the kills were all pretty much the same. We think that this was a decent first effort from Lepre as far as directing, writing and co-starring in a feature horror film goes, but perhaps this resulted in his focus spreading itself too thin. We liked the premise, though, and hope to see a follow-up sometime in the future.

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