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An eye opening film about a world we do not to see
on 16 August 2010
Dark days is an extraordinary piece of work that take you into another world. A world that's all around us, but, either don't notice as we're all too consumed in our own lives, or because we choose not to see it; because of our own selfishness, or preconceived thoughts and prejudices; prejudices which will be shattered by the time this film will be over.
It's a film about homelessness and homeless people - or rather - it's a film about their world; because extraordinary as it may seem (forgive me, it's been a while since I saw it as my copy was lent out and never returned, so I forget which city it was in - maybe New York?) but in a certain American city - underneath the streets and subway - is a whole other city. A shanty town of cobbled together homes, powered by the current from the perilously close train tracks that run through it and surround it. But these hastily erected huts are still homes. Castles in fact. Places the characters we meet and follow are immensely proud of. Places they've lovingly built and put together over the years, building, improving and adding extensions too, just like us everyday folk, and decorated with what few personal belongings they've gathered together over the years in an effort to salvage some sort life, worth, or dignity, which the world - at first glance - it seems has taken away... or has it?
The people we meet are truly extraordinary, and their stories as inspiring as they are upsetting. From the 17 year child to the oldest and wisest amongst them - Dark Days shines a light on the plight of these people and you realise that 'there but for the grace of God go I' and in fact, far from being above them (as some of us may or may not think) would we manage to cope as well if we were in their boots? Are they in fact above us in many, many ways.
I also seem to remember a lot of good extras on the DVD too - particularly about the struggle to get the film made, and for those who are into music - the quest to get DJ Shadow involved too. He supplied the soundtrack. Ultimately, Dark days is a film that everyone should be forced to watch at least once in their lives. Sadly, I see the price people are asking for this film now means that may not happen.
An other really good thing about this film is - is as much as it is sad and upsetting to watch - it's ultimately up lifting and there's a good, happy outcome. Watch it. Be amazed. Be inspired. Be thankful. And be enlightened by a film called Dark Days. Special recognition should be mentioned here to the film makers for having the guts to make this film. It took bravery on many levels I think.
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