I’ve got to say that during an opening of a movie I have never been happier seeing a couple being abducted on screen. I know it’s an indie flick and I know to always gauge my thoughts and opinions on a different scale than studio movies, but my god, what the hell was going on there?! We are told that aliens are 3 months away from invading but only a matter of seconds later they’re in the road and a chase ensues. Explosions rain down on the road around them and the characters don’t even react to it! I’m pretty sure if something was blown up beside me I’d be rather terrified. These actors just easily nominated themselves for the bad asses of the year award. After posting this review the director reached out me (without tearing me a new one might I add) and said all the explosions were practical effects. That blew my mind as they looked incredible and were shot beautifully. Knowing they were practical effects however and not CGI rather confirmed my doubts of the acting involved in that partciular scene. A CGI explosion would be harder to react to with it being invisible, but a physical explosion with no emotion or reaction comes across rather poorly. The moment they get abducted I clapped, even if I was blind and deaf Im pretty sure I could have reacted better to the sequence I just witnessed. Anyways, that’s my rant over and done with. Let’s watch a goddamn sci-fi movie!
Or is it?
The story revolves around a group of misfits who attend a therapy retreat to avoid jail time. Most of the time these therapy sessions drag on and drag on. Despite the fact we gain a good understanding of these characters; the patience threshold starts to weaken. Invasion Earth goes incredibly deep in terms of it’s main characters without anything else really happening to keep you entertained along the way. It’s all well and good having character development, but if nothing else is happening to support that development then surely it’s just an over-exagerrated showereel. At the same time thou, alongside the first act storyline, a TV presenter by the name of Johnny Pearson (Played by actor Jon Paul Gates) is trying to expose this therapy retreat as a scam for a TV show. This side-story provides quite a distraction to the main plot because it feels out of place. Even if the aliens are invading later on (or so we assume from the box cover), his character serves no purpose. Funnily enough his character didn’t serve a real clear purpose in I Am Hooligan either.. coincidence? Jon’s a good actor, but his future characters need to have some actual relevance to a story. Thankfully he doesn’t stay the duration but once again we’ve wasted a good proportion of the movie and we’re close to an hour in and nothing has happened. Yet.
But wait, it’s not all doom and gloom! Finally a movie arrives that’s slick, stylish and livens the proceedings up after a VERY long character building opening of around 71 minutes. Yes 71 minutes of the movie is character building… with 38 minutes of an actual sci-fi movie remaining. Trim the fat already, it’s getting good now!
Nice retro style horror sci-fi finishes the film. Bloody and gory with some cool special effects thrown in for good measure, but after 71 minutes of torture my brain is numbed to how great the final act becomes. If this was a short it would be incredible. As a feature it’s just not working for me.
A wonderful ending cannot make up for what was as a whole, a rather dull and lifeless movie.
Sorry guys but maybe that film title needs a changing or that cutting room needs to get chopping away.