A lot has been going on in the science world. Everything from murder hornets to watermelon glaciers in Italy. There is possible evidence of an alternate universe where time is moving backward (and no I’m not talking about Netflix’s Dark). An exoplanet may be the exposed core of a gas giant star. Or maybe your anxiety comes from good ole Coronavirus wreaking havoc on our planet. The one constant that people worry about has returned aliens.
The Drake Equation tells us the probability of alien life and their ability to communicate with humans. Currently, we don’t possess all the factors needed to gauge that probability with any accuracy, but the time is coming. Maybe we don’t want to find out. For those who claim extraterrestrials have abducted them, the experience isn’t that pleasant. It turns out aliens aren’t all that fun, or at least they aren’t yet. What is fun is watching the ultra-creepy Dark Skies.
In what feels like an updated version of the movie Signs, Dark Skies is an immersive thriller filled with twists and turns that leave the viewer with both questions and theories of their own. Here are all your burning questions answered.
Dark Skies begins with Daniel Barrett and his family of four living in suburbia where nothing out of the ordinary happens. This reality is picked apart like a scab bit by bit. Strange geometric patterns are carved into the kitchen ceiling. Family photos disappear from their living room. These small-time haunts take a dark turn when one night, their security alarm goes off, alerting the family that every entry point in their house was breached at once.
Daniel’s younger son Sammy complains that the Boogeyman visits him at night. In fact, a myriad of different strange events plagues the family. Several species of birds crash horrifically onto their home, and Lacy (Keri Russell) finds a dark, tall creature bending over Sam. Later, when strange symbols are etched into both of her son’s bodies, her fears of extraterrestrial beings prove true. Credit to the writer/director Scott Stewart for not using the X-files theme song here.
To the Barrett’s credit, they try to save their son, in albeit ineffectual and stereotypical ways. Mom finds an expert to tell them what the heck had been happening, and Dad buys a dog, a shotgun, and boards up their house. The not so cute E.T.s have repeatedly shown they can enter without opening doors or windows, but Dad is the protector of the family and sticks closely to his chosen role. The best part is, of course, is a cheeky nod to the movie Independence Day, as the climax takes place on July 4. Where’s Will Smith when you need him?
That Deceptive Ending
The twist, in the end, reveals Jesse, Sam’s older brother, was the intended target for abduction from the beginning. The question is why. Why put a masquerade on for the family only then to trick them in the end? Is there a point in scaring the bejeezus out of them?
There is foreshadowing throughout the film. For example, during a discussion between the two brothers. Jesse tells a scary story about the Sandman to his brother Sam and reveals that the Sandman would probably take his eyes instead of his younger brothers. Of course, there are more hints as Jesse’s mom finds out in the end, but this is the most obvious. This begs the question, did Jesse know that he was somehow special before he was abducted?
Jesse Is An Alien
Jesse was an alien and later given to the family to observe human nature. We see Jesse drawing his family as the aliens rather than as humans, subconsciously knowing he doesn’t belong. That also explains why he is deathly allergic to everything. Every germ and virus is foreign to him, which makes it much harder for his body to fight back. The atmosphere may not have been quite conducive to Jesse being a healthy alien boy.
The Aliens Want Both Boys
This theory doesn’t entirely fill in all the gaps, though. Why was Jesse forced to watch his father commit suicide in a hallucinogenic state? Why does Jesse speak to the family via walkie-talkie after he has been taken?. He sounds in pain and absolutely terrified. If he was an alien, to begin with, why is he now so scared? He might have grown an attachment to his human family and wishes to return or at least apologize for the torment he put them through. The more straightforward answer might be the correct one. The aliens made out like bandits with one child, so why not try and take a second?
Daniel Barrett Is An Alien
What if Dad’s(Josh Hamilton) macho posturing was intentional? What if he was the alien, and Jesse was merely possessed through some sort of mind-meld technique? The expert on all things aliens tells the family that the only way to fight back is to band together, relying on strong bonds to bring them together and keep their children safe. This explains why Dad sucks at following directions, why he fails to get a job until the end of the program when he’s got better things to do than work, and the most important: why he separates the family when the siege of the house begins. This also leaves us an answer for Jesse trying to get into communication. He wants to warn his Mom and brother who the real Boogeyman is as well as escape from the Grays.
Daniel tells his wife he doesn’t believe her when she brings up the idea of aliens until it would be weird to deny any further. The burdens of trying to provide for their family makes it that much easier to abduct Jesse. This explains why Jesse sees his father kill himself: the aliens are trying to tie up loose ends in the event they have to leave Daniel behind or if the family stirs up too much trouble back on Earth.
In the end, it doesn’t matter who is an alien and who the aliens wanted to take. One little boy has been abducted, and a family is shattered. I never trusted Dad, though. I’d bet on him trying another go and picking up Sammy on his way back to his alien brethren; Dark Skies 2 Back For Seconds.
Obsessed with the old gods and everything that resembles Lovecraft, Zach spends his days exploring the twists of horror films and can’t wait to discuss the latest explanations of any story