The Whisperer in Darkness
Written in 1931, H.P. Lovecraft's iconic genre-bending tale of suspense and alien terrors is brought to life in the style of the classic horror films of the 1930s like Frankenstein, Dracula and King Kong. Using its Mythoscope™ process — a mix of vintage and modern techniques — the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society expands on Lovecraft's original tale while still bringing you unparalleled authenticity. Horror and science fiction collide in the adventure of Albert Wilmarth, a folklore professor at Miskatonic University, as he investigates legends of strange creatures rumored to dwell in the most remote mountains of Vermont. Wilmarth’s investigation leads him to a discovery of horrors quite beyond anything he ever imagined, and ends in a desperate attempt to escape the remote New England hills with his life and sanity intact.
You gotta admire what these motivated Lovecraft-geeks have done here, and with their prior silent adaptation of "The Call of Cthulhu". Both films are shot on the double cheap in the true, modern guerilla-filmmaking spirit. They are also the most faithful Lovecraft adaptations ever produced.
The team behind 2005's "Call of Cthulhu" returns, now with a talkie! But is it as good as their previous film?
WARNING: Minor spoilers abound.
First off; no. It isn't. There's a lot to like in this, but it also has some major problems, the biggest being the actors. In Call of Cthulhu this hammy, over-the-top type of acting worked perfectly: it was the only way you could show emotions clearly in silent films. In Whisperer, it often comes off as a bit silly. That's not to say that any of the actor are good - I quite liked Matt Foyer's portrayal of Albert Wilmarth, and the hammy acting of Don Yanan as Dean Hayes, Stephen Blackehart as Charlie Tower…
Really solid from start to finish and evidence you can make a throwback genre film without repeatedly mocking the source material. CGI heavy finale is a bit much but was more likely a budget limitation than an artistic choice.
I love the work the HPLHS does, their great silent "The Call of Cthulhu" film is fantastic and this is just as good.
This story is less well known than their previous production and they have added a lot of extra story to it for the film to make it work in this medium. The film looks great, it feels very much like the time it is set. The acting overall is pretty good, Mat Foyer is excellent as the sceptical academic who discovers a strange and hideous secret hiding in the remote Vermont Hills.
The direction is great and the effects, considering they were done for very little money, work really well.
So, overall a very enjoyable and mostly faithful adaptation of Lovecraft. I'm looking forward to their next film... I would love to see them tackle something like "A Shadow Over Innsmouth".
A fun and highly successful adaptation of a Lovecraft tale. The music and credits really set the tone for the 50s homage it sets out to be. However I'd like to have seen this pushed a little further for having set such a great tone it all feels a bit to modern in execution, crisp picture and worse of all Syfy channel level CG effects, which renders it more a TV special than a genuine movie experience. That said it is a lot of fun, very atmospheric and contains some genuinely creepy moments. No doubt it was a budget thing, its just a shame they didn't stick to their convictions with a bit of movie grain to age it up…
One of those rare films that improves with each viewing...
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
This is the second HPLHS film I've seen, and the standard they have produced this to is rather astonishing.
Having been a Lovecraft fan for some time, I'm always wary of films or similar that try to capture what he writes in his books, but this does it perfectly. The music is foreboding without being overbearing, the acting is very good, though with a few odd performances, but you'll get that most places.
The special effects are something to be marveled at too, for a low budget film they are superb, they do try to really go for it with the Meego, and I don't think they pulled it off, and you can tell some of the rocks are just crumpled paper, but you simply don't care.
It's perfectly paced and it retains the thing that makes Lovecraft, Lovecraft from start to finish, great film.
Like Lovecraft? You’ll totally dig this – just know it’s wayyyyy different than the campy, over-the-top Stuart Gordon adaptations.
Shot in the style of a 30s film noir with elements of B-movie Sci-Fi, this film is as faithful to the story as it gets.
Lovely black & white and noir-esque dialog enhances the viewer’s enjoyment, as a professor gets drawn into danger when he visits a small mountain town to investigate the myths of mysterious, monstrous creatures.
No blood, just disembodied heads in jars, winged aliens, and a whole lotta HPL geekery.
I am so glad that these kinds of films are being made in 2012. It shows brave and bold film-making as this film appeals to such a niche audience that it is hardly going to make a whole lot of money.
With it's limited budget, the film is obviously let down technically and while I enjoyed the black and white 1930's look and sound of the film they could have done it better.
Though I am by no stretch a H.P. Lovecraft enthusiast, The Whisperer in Darkness invites me to read his work and I will definitely be checking out The Call of Cthulhu.
This film was brought to us by the group that created the excellent Call of Cthulhu and it's arguably one of the most accurate adaptations of Lovecraft's work to date. You can definitely tell that these guys really know (and love) the material - they treated it with respect and reverence.
This has certainly become one of my favorite Lovecraft-based films. It's not perfect - the main problem is probably that they clearly had a very small budget. This fact doesn't rear its antediluvian, tentacled head too often but a few of the sets are a bit cheap-looking and the CG creatures look extremely bad. I'm generally pretty forgiving when it comes to low or no budget but the monsters…