Wednesday, 14 February 2018

TV74: Dark



Those looking to exercise their grey cells while watching Netflix can try out this incredibly complex sci-fi (I think) series from Germany (a Netflix Original). Reminding me of both Twin Peaks and LOST, Dark is a stylish and gorgeous show that bounces around from one time period to another (including 1953, 1986 and 2019), providing tiny snippets of information that are almost impossible to piece together. This is made all the more challenging because there are so many important characters and these characters appear in different time periods, portrayed by different actors. To keep them all straight, and to keep the pieces of the story straight, is so difficult that I recommend watching the entire series as quickly as possible.

The plot concerns the inexplicable disappearance of two boys in a small German town and the fallout from that on the various families involved. The disappearance has something to do with a maze of caves near the town as well as the nearby nuclear power station. I won’t say more. As I said, there are many characters in the series so I won’t bother introducing them (or the actors) here, except for Ulrich Nielsen (played well by Oliver Masucci), a volatile police officer whose presence feels central to much of what’s going on. All of the acting is quite strong for TV. The soundtrack of the series deserves mention because it can be overwhelming at times, but it is no doubt critical to the genre.

Many of the pieces do fall into place eventually and I found each episode more compelling than the last. But for all its shocking and haunting scenes, Dark moves at a snail’s pace (not a bad thing) and lots of patience is required. I’m not entirely sure what I was watching or where it’s going, but I’m intrigued enough to award Dark ***+. My mug is up.

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