Monday, 2 July 2012
A Futurological Congress
Nacho Vilagondo's first film, Timecrimes, was an excellent, darkly comic, time-travel thriller and with his sophomore feature, Extraterrestrial, he provides another entertaining, low fi spin on a classic scifi trope, this time with an alien invasion. Waking up after a wild night, a couple who can't remember each other's names, awkwardly shuffle about before it dawns on them that the city has been emptied, all communications are down and there's a ginormous UFO parked in the sky above. As the pair try and survive amidst the confusion, suspicion and idiocy of their fellow survivors a gentle, tentative romance blossoms and things get a little complicated. The sharp, witty script fosters some brilliant, dead pan performances from the small cast and there's plenty of laughs throughout, more of a scifi-flavoured bedroom farce than anything else but still one of the most enjoyable films I've seen in a while.
Luc Besson's latest foray into scifi sees Guy Pearce channel Snake Pliskin in a rescue the presidents daughter from orbital prison romp called Lockout. Pearce does an reasonable job as the one liner spewing action hero who, after being framed for killing his boss, is given the choice of 20 years in stasis or infiltrating a space station stuffed with criminals under the command of some Scottish bampots. There's a tonne of action and some natty sfx that kinda offset the plethora of plot holes and the hackneyed set up but it never manages to distinguish itself as anything other than a fairly average B-movie. With modest expectations it'll still keep you entertained for it's 90 mins.