The Darkest Hour parents guide

The Darkest Hour Parent Guide

This intergalactic invasion, set in the Russian capital, is pure popcorn fare for older teens and adults, so audiences shouldn't expect anything enlightening in this dark tale.

Overall C+

A trip to Moscow turns into a fight for survival for a group of American tourists after alien invaders attack the Russian capital. Invisible to the human eye, these hostile trespassers gobble up electricity while destroying anything that gets in their way.

Release date December 25, 2011

Violence C+
Sexual Content B
Profanity C-
Substance Use C+

Why is The Darkest Hour rated PG-13? The MPAA rated The Darkest Hour PG-13 for sci-fi action violence and some language.

Run Time: 89 minutes

Official Movie Site

Parent Movie Review

The bleak days of winter aren’t getting any brighter with the release of The Darkest Hour. Aliens in this movie are sucking the light and life out of metropolises around the world. Falling gently from the sky, they initially look like the floating lanterns in Tangled. But once they make contact with humans, these intruders become invisible and turn the residents into piles of ash.

Among the few survivors who manage to escape is a group of young adults hiding out in the basement of a Moscow nightclub. When they finally resurface days later they discover a deserted and desolate city. But finding their way to the U.S. Embassy becomes difficult for Sean (Emile Hirsch), Ben (Max Minghella), Natalie (Olivia Thirlby) and Anne (Rachael Taylor) who have to outwit the extraterrestrial assailants that have taken over the town.

Following the alien formula flawlessly, the film lays out the protocol for avoiding the attackers and uncovering their weakness. Unfortunately the rules change with almost every interaction making it impossible to predict how the events will turn out. Although the violence is bloodless and sexual content is limited, the script contains frequent scatological slang, terms of Deity and moderate profanities.

This intergalactic invasion, set in the Russian capital, is pure popcorn fare for older teens and adults, so audiences shouldn’t expect anything enlightening in this dark tale.

Directed by Chris Gorak. Starring Emile Hirsch, Olivia Thirlby, Max Minghella. Running time: 89 minutes. Theatrical release December 25, 2011. Updated

The Darkest Hour
Rating & Content Info

Why is The Darkest Hour rated PG-13? The Darkest Hour is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for sci-fi action violence and some language.

Violence: A man steals intellectual property from another company. Aliens vaporize numerous characters and a dog. Buildings are destroyed and massive wreckage is portrayed. Characters experience many moments of peril. An alien takes control of a bus and tries to kill the people inside.

Sexual Content: A girl takes off her shirt while changing clothes. A woman tells a man she is a lesbian and that her friend has herpes. Men go to a bar with hopes of getting some sexual activity. Women wear revealing clothing and dance suggestively at a nightclub.

Language: The script contains numerous uses of scatological slang, profanities, terms of deity, a crude word for sexual activity and a crass sexual term.

Alcohol / Drug Use: Young adult characters drink at a nightclub. Following the invasion, one man drinks to deal with his stress.

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More parents' guide for The Darkest Hour after the break...

The Darkest Hour Parents' Guide

Faraday cages, which are depicted in this movie, are named after English scientist Michael Faraday who invented them in 1836. They are designed to interfere with electrical charges and prevent either the entry or escape of an electromagnetic field.

How are Russians portrayed in this film? How does this depiction differ from many other films such as The Hunt for Red October and Iron Man?

Home Video

The most recent home video release of The Darkest Hour movie is April 10, 2012. Here are some details…

Home Video Notes: The Darkest Hour

Release Date: 10 April 2012

The Darkest Hourreleases to home video on Blu-ray and Blu-ray 3D. Both versions offer the following bonus extras:

- Commentary with Chris Gorak

- All-new short film “The Darkest Hour: Survivors”

- The Darkest Hour: Visualizing an Invasion featurette

- Deleted/extended scenes

Related home video titles:

In the movies, aliens usually attack big American cities, as seen in Battle: Los Angeles and War of the Worlds (New York). In Skyline (also set in L.A.) a bright blue light is the first sign of an impending extra-terrestrial invasion.