Case Number 24211: Small Claims Court


MTI // 2012 // 85 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // July 27th, 2012

The Charge

Welcome to the Shadowlands.

The Case

It's been a while since I've had the privilege of reviewing a truly putrid move. So it's fitting now, on the eve of heading to the theater to enjoy a movie that is likely to obliterate box office records, that I'm able to sit down with something truly terrible and likely to be swallowed up into oblivion.

Dark Nemesis (aka The Dark Knight...Really?!) tells a simple story: a group of mercenaries, living in post-apocalyptic fantasy world, steal bags of silver from a warlord who looks like Shredder from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and get chased by a group of female assassins in porcelain mask, before being ambushed by a flying monster.

It's a timeless narrative, yet somehow the powers-that-be bringing this magic to life manage to make it all utterly unwatchable. Your first hint of pain-that-awaits should be the disc cover art; an incomprehensible mishmash of fantasy imagery ripped off of the side panel of 1975 Ford E-Series van. Not much there is decipherable, save for a castle, a broadsword, and a fire-breathing dragon...none of which is in this movie!

What we get are some clowns attempting to ape 300 in the opening battle, sending in assorted extras and college friends decked out in Samurai robes and ninja togs to fight against a green screen onto which is projected some of the worst CGI you'll ever see.

Until the monster shows up. The non-dragon that menaces our heroes is a brown turd-like creature that flies around and bites people on the shoulder. It's regrettably and pathetically rendered, using the absolute bargain basement CGI, making the stuff forced upon us by the Syfy Original Movie look like Avatar.

Since the entire film is built around this monster, its abject worthlessness is a pretty serious kick to the groin of the film's aspirations to be anything other than something used to prop up an imbalanced coffee table. Indeed, that might be the best use for this disc. I wouldn't even rest a beverage on it, for fear someone will notice and I'll be inadvertently caught in a conversation talking about Dark Nemesis.

Our hero is a stiff named Xan (Kyle Walsh) who teams up with other three-letter named guys to pull off this daring heist. Despite a lot of brow-furrowing and a hairstyle that goes on odd misadventures, he's a guy you'll be actively rooting to be stabbed or devoured by visual effects.

The movie does have two things going for it: the entire experience will mercifully be over in 80 minutes, and the 1.78:1/1080p HD transfer actually looks surprisingly nice. A standard Dolby 5.1 Surround mix accompanies, dutifully bellowing out the Fantasy-Action-Movie royalty-free score.

From the glaring falsehoods espoused on the cover to the brutal moviemaking that follows, Dark Nemesis is bilge all the way through.

The Verdict

Guilty. Seal this one into a capsule and blast it off into The Crab Nebula.

Review content copyright © 2012 David Johnson; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2016 HipClick Designs LLC

Scales of Justice
Judgment: 40

Perp Profile
Studio: MTI
Video Formats:
* 1.78:1 Non-Anamorphic (1080p)

Audio Formats:
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (English)

* English (SDH)

Running Time: 85 Minutes
Release Year: 2012
MPAA Rating: Not Rated

Distinguishing Marks
* None

* IMDb