Harlan Pyne is a very bad man, and like many bad men he just doesn’t understand what he did that was so wrong. In fact, if you were to ask him, he’d say that everyone was always goading him on and misinterpreting his actions. So when Doctor Samantha Goodman actually does goad him on, for really real this time, at his sanity review he gets a little upset. He’s spent 15 years locked up in an insane asylum and in his opinion he’s paid his debt. Never mind the kidnap/murder/rape thing that got him in there in the first place.
However, Goodman shouldn’t have goaded him and she knows it, but she’s a little bit on edge. Who can blame her? The CAT scans she had that morning have revealed that a brain tumor she has isn’t in remission anymore, but is growing. No possibility of cure or treatment.
Wanting to break the news to her family gently. She suggests that she and her husband go up to their cabin with her sister, just the three of them. Well… for a little while. Seems that ol’ Harlan has pulled a great escape and is still nursing a bit of a grudge. So when he and an equally psychotic friend arrive to break up the little get-together we know it’s not going to be pretty.
But Harlan isn’t there simply for revenge. Samantha psychoanalyzed him, so he’s going to psychoanalyze her, old school style. He wants to know why a psychiatrist lost her cool with him, and he wants to know why sometimes she would… well, I won’t say. That would be ruining it. I’ll let you discover it all on your own.
The Dark Hours is one of those rare gems out of Canada that wipes away the bad taste left by movies like Men with Brooms. It’s not trying to be “typically Canadian” or anything else except a dark, and at times, brutal thriller. There’s a scene in this movie, where if you don’t wince. You’re not human.
Paul Fox and Will Zmak have crafted a clever film that relies on nuance and intelligence to make you squirm, rather than ripping off a Nine Inch Nails video. As such, it’s a smidgen too theatrical and talky at times, but if you have the patience for a movie where something doesn’t blow up every five seconds, you’ll find this a rewarding experience.