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"The Invasion" is a film about a Washington psychiatrist who unearths
the origin of an alien epidemic, she also discovers her son might be
the only way it can be stopped and it appears to be another adaptation
of the classic "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" book.
The film starts when a space shuttle lands on earth launching the movie into a fast paced (however sometimes nauseating) thrill ride and assumes that the audience already know what is going after the fourth installment of the franchise, however even if someone has never seen the earlier installments it is very easy for someone to pick up on the story and the plot. Saying that the plot and dilenma of the story is explained very well, it just doesn't really go into detail about the virus and only really deals with the emotional side of the story and character development.
The emotional story of the film is possibly the strongest factor in the film because it shows Carol Bennell, played by Nicole Kidman (Moulin Rouge, The Others, Fur) slowly start to crack as events go on. The reason why this is so superb is because Kidman gives on of her best performances in recent years and maybe of her career; she gives unbelievable depth and character to her role and to add to that plays up her role best when she is with her on screen son Oliver played by Jackson Bond, who also gives a solid and interesting performance. Daniel Craig (Casino Royale, Munich) and Jeremy Northam (Wuthering Heights, The Tudors) have smaller roles however they give good solid performances, even though a little uninspiring.
The Music in the film, composed by John Ottman is breathtakingly suspenseful and is a strong point of the film leaving the audience wrapped in suspense with the acting yet also with the music. This is the same with the editing which is no-nonsense and quick, however the editing can sometimes be confusing as at numerous points through the film, clips of the past and future are shown sometimes disorientating the audience and leaving them wondering what just happened.
Aside from a the good points of the film, there is one thing that really stood out in the film, the re-shoots and that isn't a very good thing, the re-shoots stand out from the rest of the film and the end, well the end just doesn't go with the start of the film and the last ten minutes nearly ruined the film for me. With ten minutes to go the film is still a sophisticated Thriller, yet after that it turns into some mad action flick, however that is not director Oliver Hirschbiegel's fault as Warner Brother's pushed him aside to re-direct what they thought audiences would like.
Overall this film is a sophisticated and enjoyable thriller with excellent performances (mainly from Kidman and Bond), yet the ending and a few other scenes totally flawed by re-shoots nearly ruin the film, who knows, maybe one day we will see a true Directors cut of what Hirschbiegel truly wanted in this film, but until then we still have this enjoyable, solid thriller, which is an OK adaptation of "The Invasion of the Body Snatchers" by Jack Finney. "The Invasion" is however a great film, but you can't help but wonder what levels this film would excel in if the studio had left it alone.
4 stars out of 5
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
OK, first of all this movie almost made me fall asleep. It was probably
the most boring movie i've ever seen. The only saving grace is the 3
minute car chase at the end. Besides this it was dumb, Stupid and just
plain crap!!! The aliens could have been better and not just have skin
growing on their faces. And the don't show emotion thing that was
ridiculous, I mean it didn't even look scary it was more of boring
effects. As I said before the only redeeming part was the part the
studio made them reshoot.
All in all the acting was fair, the editing was good but the story lacks on so many levels. The movie really did contain to much dialog, so mush it dumbed down the film even more.
I gave this a 4/10 and I was being generous. The film is terrible don't waste time or money on it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Mindful of Daniel Craig's fine performance in "Casino Royale" and Nicole Kidman's in "The Hours", I thought "The Invasion" might have some interest even though it was panned by the critics. Wrong. It started quite well with its picturesque setting in Washington, DC and good photography. It progressively got worse, leaving the last half of the movie a tedious mess of noisy car chases, fiery crashes, violent beatings or shootings and mucus-covered zombies. Kidman and Craig exchanged tiresome clichés and mother-kiddie emotive syrup was poured over the ever-worsening script. There were only five people in the entire cinema on the 2nd day after opening - how come others knew to stay away? It pains me to think our ticket prices helped pay for Kidman's massive $15m or so salary for this truly dreadful film.
Why do Hollywood producers set their sights on a talented European
director, get them to film one of their scripts, and then subsequently
throw it away while hiring one of their own to helm reshoots and change
the entire movie? First you dump all your cash on an artistic vision
and then you grow scared that the public won't get it and therefore
won't pay to see it. So, here is a smart move, lets spend even more
money to redo what you just paid for and make a piece of trash that
people really won't go and see. You'd probably end up making more
profits by just releasing what you think is a failure rather than drain
the bank even drier. Unfortunately for Oliver Hirschbiegel, director of
the Oscar nominated Downfall, this is exactly the case. Credit him for
being civil and saying that the Wachowski brothers and their ward James
McTeigue had good points to offer for enhancing the tale. Still,
though, just the fact that he didn't shoot the retakes himself tells
that he was unceremoniously dumped from the project. There is no way to
tell at the moment whether Hirschbiegel's version, from last year,
would have been a masterpiece, but, this hodgepodge out now surely is
not. The real kicker is that I enjoyed it much more than I probably
should have. I like to think that I have Oliver to thank for that.
The film itself is of course a new adaptation of the novel The Body Snatchers. An alien lifeform has come to Earth, begins to inhabit the humans, and transforms them during their sleep into a being without emotion. Maybe it is because I am reading Atlas Shrugged at the moment, or because the novel was written after World War II, but the tale has a pretty overt anti-Communism bent. There are many moments speaking of how conflict is human nature and that once our world becomes peaceful and serene, we then cease to be human. This is quite obvious when the leader of the aliens talks of how war has stopped and peace treaties are being signed everywhere. These pod-people have no anger or fear and therefore are able to coexist peacefully, but what is the point of living unafraid when you can't ever be happy or joyful in that tranquility? The people who have been taken over have now become a collective, out to convert all those different from them. They live together for the good of the group, while the "capitalists" strive for feeling and emotion and life to be lived. The real interesting thing, though, while being anti-Communist, it is also pro-war. This is a rare thing nowadays in film. When Iraq and Darfur are mentioned here, it is to show how the aliens have alleviated these problems. In effect, the bad guys have stopped the war that our heroes have started. Fascinating to think about.
Since the story is known by most people alive today, it has been made into film so many times, we need to talk about the artistry of what is on screen. This film is definitely a mixed bag. Like so many hijacked works, there are many instances of cutting that appear awkward and choppy. Whether a weird tonal shift or a huge jump in time, it feels as though someone laid all the footage taken and hacked and slapped it together to try and keep coherence by using the thriller aspects of Hirschbiegel's stock with the action sequences of McTeigue. Lets just say that this is annoying and makes you realize you are witnessing a movie, never letting you soak completely into the tale. With that said, someone did an amazing job with editing nonetheless. Sprinkled in with the disjointedness are moments of geniusa splicing of past, present, and future in a single vignette. I've seen this trick used before, the film eludes me now, and I love it. While our stars talk about what they must do, we see flashes of past instances, which led to their thought process, along with flashes of how they actually do what they are discussing. We then get the planning, the thinking, and the execution all at once for what is an exhilarating experience. Credit to either Hirschbiegel or McTeigue for that bit of artistry, whomever was responsible.
When all is said and done, though, the film is really just a slight actioner that tries to thrill. It is a bit of a headcase, never quite knowing what kind of film it wants to be and as a result can never be a success. I applaud Daniel Craig, Jeremy Northam, and especially Jeffrey Wright for not choosing to phone in their performances, but instead take their roles seriously. As for Nicole Kidman, I can't say the same. While the cinematography is wonderful throughout, always on eye level and always in close-up, I almost wish it weren't. While in any other film I would thoroughly enjoy non-stop Kidman, here it just doesn't work. The whole Meg Ryan/ collagen lip thing is very unattractive, and her voice is annoying. Whether it's the lips or the whispered voice to disguise her accent, it is just plain bad. While she gets better as the film continues, the early scenes are atrocious. When the camera cuts to her while seeing a patient, her expression is total fake doctor pretending to care about your troubles for as long as needed until I can write you a prescription. She plays a psychiatrist like the kind of stereotype that her ex-husband hates. Maybe some Scientology Tom Cruise rubbed off on her because she makes the occupation out to be a joke, even to the point where she decides to solve problems with more meds. Her look of interest is amateurish and never natural. Tom must be proud.
Once again, we have the unfortunate "invasion", if you will, of the
IMDb Bury Brigade toasting a superb movie without really offering any
justifiable criticisms in their responses. I would really like to ask
these people,"Did you even WATCH the movie at all?" First of all, the
performances on the part of both Daniel Craig and Nicole Kidman were
absolutely stunning. Nicole's performance was so believable that I felt
exhausted during her intense fight to stay awake in order not to become
an unfortunate victim of the alien virus. Secondly, this was a very
worthy remake of a sci-fi classic and I even have to admit that I liked
this one better than even the original and definitely more than any of
the other remakes that have ever been produced.
So, please. Do not listen to the negative rants of the critics on this one. I can guarantee that you will find this film to be a highly engaging, and intelligent, sci-fi thriller.
"Invasion" isn't to me a classic, yet it's entertaining and worth a watch with some interesting moments and good acting from Nicole Kidman. Kidman stars as Carol Bennell a Washington, D.C. psychiatrist who one day meets with a patient who claims her husband is no longer really her husband. Soon that will be the norm as the viewer finds that the whole national capital is under the control of people who are zombie like and act very different. All of this apparently resulted from particles left over from a space shuttle crash which has left some type of dead virus that has affected humans. The virus is mostly transmitted thru saliva and liquids as it's crazy during moments of the film as the infected will spit on the last of the human race to try and inflict them. So it's up to Carol to save the day thru science and experiment with chemicals at the national government lab with the help of a scientist(played by Daniel Craig). As well portrayed in the film this overtakes all headlines just as in real life when such outbreaks happen they become media darlings and we like forget about Iraq and terrorism. The movie is also interesting and entertaining with car chases and crashes and the need to save the human race. And anything is worth a watch with the charming and beautiful Nicole Kidman her performance here was glossy and soulful.
What were You thinking? Like Honestly.
I'm actually upset with you.
With the original "Invasion" films, we have gotten a gloomy, scary theme of "Who do I/Can I trust?". And we have gotten a strong protagonist. And overall all of the "Invasion" films have been great or at least enjoyable.
Sadly with this new, I guess "re-imagining", we end up with an oddly put together film. Let me start with the feel of the film.
If you have seen ANY of the original or re-makes of the "Invasion" films, you know we have that "Who do I/Can I Trust" theme, so you won't really be overly sold on the theme alone, soley based on the fact you aren't going to be shocked if someone turns out not to be who they say they are.
Let me take us onto the Cast of this film.
In the originals/re-makes, we have gotten ourselves an overall strong performance from the characters. But in this we get a mixed cast, mostly for these reasons. Daniel Craig, he's great...but... not in this, because he seems so bored and unimpressed with where this is going. Nicole Kidman, i usually like her, in this I wanted her character to die. Then the rest of the cast has a mixed feeling amongst them, mostly because a lot of them don't seem to want to sell the movie to anyone.
I guess the directing isn't bad, so i won't attack.
But really there is no need to this is film, it doesn't do anything for anyone. It's just so meh.
Thanks Hollywood, for wasting talent, and my time.
Half decent thriller, I wasn't bored, so I decided to give it a 6/10 which is probably slightly more than it deserves. Basically, this was just a slightly better, high budget version of a Sy-Fy made for TV movie. The science is bad (or non-existent), there is little (or no) attention to detail, etc... What the movie has going for it however is Nicole Kidman... Even though this is certainly not a role she will be remembered for, she carries the movie almost single handedly. Daniel Craig is basically wasted here, I don't even know what he was paid for in this film, his role is so marginal it makes no sense in my mind to enroll such a star and then do nothing with him... The rest is all average, the music, the cinematography, the script, etc. It will kill an hour and a half of your time decently though, so what the heck!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This 2007 sci-fi thriller starring Nicole Kidman is the fourth film
version of Jack Finney's novel "The Body Snatchers," the earlier movies
being the classic 1956 "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" and its 1978
remake of the same name, and 1993's "Body Snatchers." (Actually, it's
the fifth one, if you also count "Invasion of the Pod People," a
direct-to-video bomb described by one IMDb reviewer as "a flick about
an alien ginger plant that turns mean girls into sex-starved, naked
lesbians.") But a good story can stand repeated interpretations, and
this is no exception.
Although Kidman's acting is in some scenes fairly stiff, and Daniel Craig (fresh off his first turn as James Bond) seems somewhat wasted in his role as her boyfriend, this is a surprisingly effective version, nicely playing up the most important element of the story: the growing apprehension and suspicion that captures the quickly-dwindling number of uninfected people. With almost no sci-fi trappings other than minimal make-up effects, the movie instead emphasizes that psychological angle; the victims are not physically replaced as in the earlier films, but mentally enslaved. (In a small but key role, Veronica Cartwright plays one of the few who are immune, a tip of the hat to the 1978 version in which she also appeared.) A new element is the introduction of a child character, the safety of whom is a key motivator for Kidman, who plays the boy's mother.
While this film does take a slightly different route from its predecessors in replacing the original bean-like "pods" with a virus-like epidemic brought to Earth on a crashing space shuttle, it repeats a key plot point: that "they get you when you're asleep." Since everyone has at some time had the experience of struggling to stay awake, this puts the audience right in the same situation: what if staying awake meant more than seeing the end "The Tonight Show," but was instead a matter of life and death?
I know some reviewers are upset with the producer's decision >>>SPOILER ALERT<<< to have mankind ultimately defeat the alien invasion, but the "twist ending" from the earlier films is already well-known, so little is lost from having the plot of this one essentially tied up in a neat little bow (although I must admit that the climactic "escape" scene that ultimately leads to the victory was a bit lackluster.)
Still, while by no means a science fiction classic, "The Invasion" is an entertaining movie, and well worth seeing at least once.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The Invasion (2007): Dir: Oliver Hirschbiegel / Cast: Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig, Jeffrey Wright, Jeremy Northam, Jackson Bond: This is easily the worst of the Body Snatchers films with penetration still being the theme but never fully examined here. The 1956 version was groundbreaking and suspenseful with a remake in 1978 that is easily one of the best of remakes with its paranoia theme. This one seems more action oriented than thrilling and even those scenes will put viewers in that sleep state that victims are subdued too. Directing and production are fine but the cast are a complete waste. Nicole Kidman holds her own as a mother struggling to find answers and a solution. Her son apparently is immune to the virus so she requests that he inject her if she happens to drift off asleep. Daniel Craig should fire his agent after going from James Bond to this. His role is merely a potential romantic prop that is beneath his talent. Jeffrey Wright is another worthy talent who makes a wasted appearance. Jeremy Northam plays Kidman's ex-husband who will obviously become infected early. Jackson Bond plays Kidman's son who is about as useless as mowing grass in five feet of snow. The 1956 and 1978 versions are highly recommended thrill rides that work, while this stupid and pointless film invaded by idiocy and a complete lack of intelligence. Score: 3 ½ / 10
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