Dark Military, The (2017)

Starring R. Marcos Taylor, Loren W. Lepre, Gina Marie Scholl

Directed by Loren W. Lepre

The things some people will pull off simply to gain even the slightest bit of notoriety – well, that notion will be put to the test in Loren W. Lepre’s latest violent endeavor, The Dark Military.

Small town, Halloween-time – the leaves have changed, the air’s getting a bit cooler, and the opportunity for some cold, hard fame is on the line for a group of overeager folks willing to throw themselves directly into the belly of the beast. The name of the game here is called “Survival Grounds,” and what some people might consider all an act, means the world to others, and this little band of unsuspecting souls are in for quite the shock, as well as everyone watching online. Now with the expectation of success, each member of the party will have to ditch their cell phones and be willing to get trucked WAY OUT in the middle of nowhere, dropped off, and patiently await as “The Military” descends upon them. For all intents and purposes, this sounds like quite the fun gig, until it becomes painfully clear that this marauding band of sadists with attitudes aren’t in this to boost popularity – they want to destroy everything at every turn. Families, friends, and even the police are helpless to stop the online massacre as it unfolds – premise seems simple, but damn was it fun to watch.

Lepre also pulls off double-duty here as the evil Barabbas, one of the military’s lead-dogs, and it’s an understatement to call him “detached,” yet tactically sound in his methods of inflicting pain and terror. The film certainly has its moments when it comes to unflinching violence, and some of the performances add to the genuine fright that this product emits – who knows how many of these insane sects reside out in the great unseen, just waiting to latch their hooks into the unknowing and unsuspecting? R. Marcos Taylor is convincing in his role as the dogged police chief determined to hunt down the barbaric radicals, and Child’s Play alum Alex Vincent and Dark Shadows’ Sharon Lentz also have their moments on-screen as well. Now while some negative-Nellies could rail on this pic for its low-budget look or plot gaps, it’ll still stand up as one of those midnight-watches that really should be appreciated for what it is: in-your-face, brutal and unstoppable. Do you have what it takes to try and survive this army’s recruitment? Make sure to give this one a look when it marches in your direction.

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Matt Boiselle

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