It should have been the night of the dark Knight, but it has become a night. In English this incipit would make more and the title of the film, Dark Nightprobably was not chosen by chance. Inspired by "Aurora Massacre", The night in which twelve people were killed and seventy wounded, this film, which underlines its not wanting to be a documentary, tells just what happened in the hours before the tragic event of that 20 July 2012 during the first The Dark Knight Rises.
Not a docufilm, it is good to repeat it, because what you might think when entering the room is to see a reconstruction of events, with testimonies of people who survived the shooting and with actors who interpret the experiences. Dark Night is nothing of this, but rather a concentrate of emotions, of everyday situations and almost insignificant events, to constitute the "plot" of a film whose ending is already known, or the massacre of the cinema. And this is precisely the peculiarity of the film: the intention of the director Tim Sutton is not to tell a story or give us more information than the news at the time, because everything is already known, the viewer already knows how the film will end, but he does not know who of the protagonists will be the one who will put an end to the life of twelve innocents.
In fact, Dark Night sees the succession of different scenes of people whose life will never be intertwined, if not for sporadic extras. The lives of these people are normal and each of them fights with their own inner monster, but never give the impression of being an alleged killer: if you have a friend attached to the gym and with selfies, or you know a nice guy with blue eyes, you have a skater friend with piercing or you still see the same shop assistant at the supermarket they could all be presumed murderers.
Said so obviously would seem almost alarmist, but Dark Night really wants to underline how what happened to Aurora is not the result of the mind of a terrorist or criminal organization, but of an ordinary person, certainly with problems, but apparently had a life normal, like all of us. The continuous change of scenes, without the viewer can actually become attached to a single character, makes the process of estrangement from facts: the spectator will never be intrigued to know what happens to one of the boys, since the story tells nothing. There is no evolution of situations, time is stopped, the viewer is simply bombarded by symbols (like a Captain America toy or a succession of masks worn in a non-random sequence) and emotions, which slowly get into the psyche of the characters as if to try to understand who among those people, apparently so normal, can eventually surrender to their inner self and unleash their madness on the unfortunate fans of Batman. No interest in their lives, but an extreme to penetrate their minds.
The intent is precisely this, therefore, accompany the viewer to a climax whose outcome is already known, and the film does so well; the shots always highlight what is worthy of attention and the soundtrack, composed of some original songs, gently accompanies the scenes without ever being out of place. The only thing that can be done to the narration, if it can be defined, is to be too slow in some scenes, especially for the viewer who is not clear how Dark Night was thought. Tim Sutton wanted widely denounce something that in the United States is becoming dangerously on the agenda, making citizens accustomed to events that should never happen; the precautions are in a sense taken by the Government itself with special programs to prepare for a possible attack, but the possibility of being able to buy weapons and the weakness of the human psyche make these increasingly probable events.
The film's finale then reaches the climax of pathos: the scene in which happy people go to the movies, disguised as their favorite superhero and ignore that soon a madman would have put an end to their lives, is truncated without warning, with the executioner who satisfied with his preparations comments what will happen to happen as "the beginning of a party". Dark Night is a film that must be understood even before being viewed: who expects a film full of action, an engaging storyline or characters that evolve over time will certainly be disappointed and bored, those who want to enter the psyche of people and try to understand who, even by small gestures, can be the one who will give life to the "Massacre di Aurora" despite its normal daily life, it will surely be conquered by the emotions of the images and the soundtrack.