Really fun late 80's adventure horror - just three decades too late.
As I look through the IMDb scores for Extraterrestrial, I have a theory that the lower ones are coming from children of the 90's and aughts - those who have grown up to expect a particular bleak atmosphere from alien abduction movies such as that set by efforts like 'Dark Skies' or 'The Fourth Kind'.
I suspect the reviews giving it the higher scores are from kids who grew up in (or are just fans of) the older school 'adventure' horrors that became popular in the late 80's. Movies like The Lost Boys, Waxwork, Evil Dead 2, Night of the Creeps, Return of the Living Dead 2, Creepozoids, The Blob remake etc. - you know the ilk, movies whose subject matters varied wildly yet they always had the same sort of vibe - a fast-paced, popcorn-entertainment 'adventure' feeling.
That, I feel, is what the Vicious Brothers were purposefully going for in Extraterrestrial. Although they mixed in a generous dollop of the 90's cabin in the woods type characters and the 2000's abduction movie clichés, it's the late 80's vibe that rings clear throughout. If Extraterrestrial had been made 25-30 years ago, it would likely have starred the Two Corey's, or perhaps Zach Galligan and Brinke Stephens. The cop would have been Tom Atkins or Lance Henriksen; and the crazy Michael Ironside character would have been Dick Miller... or perhaps Michael Ironside, come to think of it.
Bottom line is, Extraterrestrial clearly has a primary intent of being fun rather than scary. There's a few creepy moments - most memorably the skeletal body of a dead alien vanishing into the murky waters of a swimming pool - and a few more serious turns towards the end, but overall, it's more of an adventure/survival flick than a psychological/terror flick. If we still had drive-ins, it would be playing in them right now to crowds of frisky teens instead of on Netflix.
Check your expectations before you turn it on. You're not going to get scared, or grossed out, or made to think too hard, or put on the edge of your seat with tension... but if willing, you are going to have a lot of fun. 7/10.
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