Dylan Dog: Dead of Night (2011)

This modestly budgeted genre flick had its genesis as a comic book series I’d never heard of…and you can tell. It follows the title character, a supernatural special investigator in New Orleans, as he navigates his way through a monster-inhabited ‘film noir’ mystery story. This movie is mostly an exercise in ‘style over substance’; carried along with a slick look and a surprising dose of humor. Brandon Routh (Superman Returns) plays Dylan and unfortunately plays him rather blandly. HIs expression and tone don’t really change too much…regardless of the peril he seems to find himself in. Luckily, his life-challenged partner Marcus, played by a hilarious Sam Huntington ( Superman Returns) is along for the ride and the dude gets all the lines. He’s a funny character, especially as he tries to come to terms with a rather extreme medical condition; while encountering some of the more…interesting folks in the neighbourhood; the ones he never knew existed…and would probably be happier with keeping it that way. Taye Diggs (Go) brings some fun traits to his playa vampire lord role and was actually refreshing in a character that we’ve seen numerous times (Blade, Underworld anyone?). I wish I had the same praise for the lame, forgettable female character. I have no idea who the actress is (not that I care) but she was awful. Her line deliveries were incredibly stilted and nothing stood out about her. Due to her obnoxious presence, the movie does its best to shoehorn in a weak and unneeded romantic element. It did knock the flick down a notch or two…simply because I found it annoying. Something I found suspicious was the glaring similarity to The Dresden Files book series; a series that follows the supernatural adventures of wizard/private investigator Harry Dresden as he investigates and fights vampires, werewolves etc. Both of which turn up here. Hell, Dresden drives a shitty VW…just like Dylan Dog! Coincidence?! I don’t know! For some reason, the word ‘Plagiarizism’ drifted through my melon more than once. But then something surprisingly cool would happen and I’d let it go. If you’re craving a quirky, stylish supernatural ‘film noir’, with a self-aware sense of humor and some very sweet monster concepts, in amongst some bad acting and half-baked ideas…Dylan Dog: Dead of Night will fill that quota.

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