Life (2017) Poster

(I) (2017)

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Good looking movie with unbelievable plot and mediocre characters
djgoutsmart23 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
The Good:

Believable, big budget special effects. Some decent jump scares and squirm-in-your-seat horror.

The Bad:

The characters were generic and boring. The acting was often spotty and not consistent with the situation (more poor direction than bad acting I think). The Martian creature came from the soil on Mars where it had to hibernate to survive, yet it could survive freezing cold, burning heat, no oxygen, space vacuum and everything else the crew could throw at it. And it pretty much ate everything (including cooling fluid). Lazy science to aid lazy plot sequences.

The Ugly:

Unrealistic behavior from professional astronauts and scientists. Every scene seemed to be a result of a poor decision putting the crew at risk. Everything seemed predictable and there was little-to-no tension.

Unlike the brilliant Alien - where you felt the protagonist (Ripley) and crew did everything right, yet fell victim to a horrifyingly believable alien (except for Ripley and the cat of course) - the crew in Life pretty much seemed to randomly do things, forget things, then remember things, and generally make the worst of the situation, while terrorized by the "super-alien-jellyfish" thing. I spent most of the movie thinking "wait... what? why?". Mediocre film from a mediocre Director.
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So much little logic...
majoreasy24 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Great start and I was riveted for the first 20 or so minutes...then the plot fell over from a lack of logic and slid further and further away from reality.

If the whole story was crap from the start, just from the filming and acting, I might have given this a 3 or even 5...but for something so promising to turn bad from just before the half way mark was extremely disappointing and frustrating.

As said...the beginning was nice and though there were some misplaced work ethics and contradictions, it was acceptable and we can put them down to human character flaws...

Some examples of what killed it for me...spoiler ahead...

The commander decided to not come back in to the station and instead leave the creature outside...why didn't she just push herself away...she should know that in space...a light push will keep her going forever...instead, she allowed the creature a chance to cling back onto the space station...heroic maybe, but not smart (a non-scientific-minded commander of a space station?).

Miranda and David found out that they can track the creature's movement. At that same time, Sho is still hiding in the sleep pod and to them, he is still missing and without comms...wouldn't the immediate normal human (team)reaction is to find and bring back the third last surviving member of the group? They trapped the creature in one area. Shouldn't, wouldn't they try to 'kill' it when it is trapped? No...doing something would be more taxing than just chatting with each other.

The part where Sho opened the door to the 'rescue' shuttle and air started rushing out...all three of them looked like they were hanging on for dear life not to be 'sucked' away...yet once they decide that Sho is dead and lost, the two of them can scramble away like normal zero gravity...huh?? Were they just acting out the struggle with rushing air? In the same scene...many people have died and their anger and repulsion for the creature is well known...yet, when the creature crawled from Sho to Miranda, she kept on holding him to allow it to crawl onto her...try that with a rat or a spider and we all know that it is not normal for a person repulsed by something to keep holding on like that... Instead, Sho must act the hero to rip the creature back onto himself to save her...if he had wanted to save her, he should have let go when he realised he couldn't shake the creature...

The creature was floating around outside the space station for quite a long time...but they decide at the end that it needed oxygen to survive (like humans? can we float around outside a space station for more than 2 minutes- even assuming we can handle the decompression like the creature can???) and in fact would hug an oxygen producer is laughable...please...before filming start...decide if the creature needs oxygen!!! (or love oxygen in fact)

David put the escape pod into manual mode so that he can fly himself and the creature out to deep space...and while I understand the creature is very smart and learns quickly...but so quickly that it can fly the escape pod back for a re-entry? Wow...a half degree off would either skip the pod back out to space or dive too steeply and incinerate the pod...but it did the improbable...perfect re-entry control without lessons or prior practise....frigging brilliant...

There were many more like these but I lost interest not much later after the commander died and the rest preferred to cry instead of dealing a serious didn't register much of the less glaring...

A possible Alien level movie failed by poor scripting and story...could have been a real classic...but sadly no...Hollywood's thinking that we must like space movies because the CGI is impressive needs to change...they should have a re-look at Alien, Sunshine, Moon and The Martian and understand that space can be a great movies backdrop but logic MUST still be strictly earth-bound if it involves humans...

Not yet offensive to the intellect but just sad and unrealistic.
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God-awful movie that makes Prometheus look like a brilliant sci-fi movie
danieltemesvari1 April 2017
Warning: Spoilers
This has to be the worst sci-fi movie I have ever seen (and trust me I have seen a lot). It is an insult to anyone with just half a brain. But let me give you a little taste of this gem:

It starts off with a capsule with a soil probe from Mars on its way to Earth that is out of control due to a crash with little meteorites. The ISS, where the probe should be processed, has to catch it manually, which they do by means of an extendable arm. Okay. I wont go into the physics off this, but if you have ever seen how much energy is set free when a car crashes into something with 100km/h relative velocity, you should know that such a catching maneuver is bound to go south (not even talking about the problem of maintaining a space station in geostationary orbit with nothing but little jet nozzles whilst trying to get it into a configuration such that it has low relative velocity with respect to a capsule that is headed straight for Earth with something like 20000km/h). Mind you, at this point we are 5 minutes into the movie and the science was already thrown out of the window.

Fast forward. We are in the CDC approved lab, which is a plexiglass shielded section of the ISS with nothing but a plexiglass door without any further safety precautions. Inside this section is a glove box, where they keep the probe. Turns out the probe contains life which has been idle for about 4 billion years without decaying (obviously entropy doesn't apply to aliens). Well, how about we try to wake it without further investigation? Yeah, let's do that.

Fast forward. It has grown to a hand-sized organism, but has fallen into a slumber again. It's still inside the glove box and attacks the biologist who tried to wake it by electrocuting it. It breaks his tool and his hand, which causes him to faint, and leads to its escape from the box by means of using the broken tool to cut open the glove of the glove box. (yeah, it only took earth's organisms like 3 billion years to learn to use tools, this thing does it in less than 12 hours). But fear not, whilst the life form is busy eating a rat, a colleague hops in the lab and pulls the biologist out. Surprise, surprise, the organism latches on him, so that the other guys have to seal him into the lab. He tries to burn the organism with an oxygen torch and with a flame thrower (which they obviously have ready to use on a space station, ofc). Welp, it doesn't help, this carbon-water-based organism is immune to fire (hey, because chemistry doesn't apply to aliens, didn't you know?). Subsequently, the organism kills him and eats him from the inside. The fire has caused the air vents to open, which somehow can only be closed one by one, and gives the organism time to flee.

Jup, we are not even 20 minutes into this masterpiece but the stupidity is mind-boggling. I could keep on writing about a lot more of this utterly dumb movie (like the organism being able to survive in space for prolonged times, the space station being out of fuel just at a time where it is convenient for the "plot", the organism drinking toxic liquid coolant, the space station going on a descent right after it has been pushed outward on an ascending course (because screw logic), etc.), but let me finish by saying that in the end of the movie this organism has figured out how to read instruments in an escape pod, how to steer said escape pod and how to safely reenter it into earth's atmosphere, all whilst fighting the astronaut in the escape pod. (Which was tried to be masked as plot twist. but you could see that one from a mile away). And although it has killed every astronaut basically on sight, it decided to leave this last one in the escape pod alive with itself latched to him. Wanna know why? Because it has anticipated that, despite it successfully completing the landing of a space ship, it won't be able to open the door of the escape pod and someone on the outside has to do it for it. Which some fisher men actually do, despite the fact that they can clearly see that inside the pod there is a bloody, heavily injured astronaut with a man-sized alien octopus attached to it.

I urge you to not go to watch this movie. Waste of time and money. I have suffered through it. No need for you to suffer too.
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Not as bad as people make it out to be.
emailbox9111 June 2017
The internet is a funny place... it seems to be filled with people who have graduated with 5 Ph.Ds. and clearly seem to be smarter than everybody else (thousands of astronauts and astrophysicists on IMDb apparently). One star rating? Come on... Clearly, you haven't watched enough films to know decent from terrible.

I watched this film without having heard of it (no trailers, spoilers or anything). I'm a sci-fi fan and thought this was a good watch.

I found the characters to lack depth and their actions were questionable at times but the plot was believable and the acting decent. Special effects were good and made the movie believable in my opinion. The movie was well shot and I thought the scenes with the creature were pretty cool.

I don't get how people even compare this movie to "Aliens"; it's nothing alike. Overall, I thought it was pretty good.
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Oh dear! More stupid, dumb, gullible "professionals" in space!
crazylegscain25 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
First let me get something out of the way, I apologise for the cretins who compare this film with such masterpieces as Alien, Aliens or any of the first 4 Alien films which are vastly superior to this piece of tripe. This film should be compared to the equally disturbing and lame "Prometheus", but those bunch of retards, sorry "astronauts" in that film obviously went to the same space academy as this sorry bunch of losers. My jaw just hit the floor from the very start of this pathetic effort. Catching containers from Mars like you were fishing for Sticklebacks in a pond? Are you ****in kidding me? Then scientist guy starts playing with an ALIEN life form like he's just picked a bogey out of his nose! While wearing kitchen gloves! I don't know about you but that thing was doing some freaky sheet and these are just a few things that would of concerned me: Does it bite, stab, explode, give off gases, radiate any sort of energy, could it control your brain? Before that thing started turning into a mini transformer and going for a mooch I would of been long gone and phoning home for a ticket back. When little alien called "Calvin" ...... (No I'm not making this up!) Decides to grab scientists arm and act all hostile (Due to Calvin having a nap, to be rudely woken up by being ELECTROCUTED) another of the brain dead astronauts wants to go in and rescue him! Later on Calvin is crawling all over Jap guy and two fellow crew are trying to pull him towards them into their part of the station? WHY? Just so much of this awful logic defying stuff is going on that I just couldn't take anymore. I was just wishing for Calvin to finish off these goons as soon as possible and I had a chuckle to myself every time one bit the dust. I vote 2 because the ending was so satisfying. If these bunch of sad goons represent the pinnacle of human achievement, the whole species can die. I would call this film "Prometheus 2 - squid takes out pathetic humans again"
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Ignore the hate and give it a go!
mukool-hastak12 June 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I've seen a loooot of bad reviews for this movie, the primary reason for the hate being that the plot was 'unrealistic' or 'implausible'........ uhm.........what the f**k, haters? If you want to watch a sci-fi alien monster movie that's 'realistic', go watch some NASA documentaries, don't come to the cinemas.

Another reason for all the bad reviews seems to be that it 'tries to imitate Alien but fails'. Well, f**k, then no one else should ever try to make another space monster movie ever! Lets just keep watching the 1979 'Alien' again and again........seriously.....

So, why do i think this movie is so much better than all the negative press it is getting ? Well for a change it's set on the ISS, not a fictional planet or space-ship floating around 100s of light-years away.....(implausible they say). It has people who seem to be astronauts, dealing with a growing life form, rather than space heroes shooting space guns at space monsters (unrealistic, they say). The horror, suspense and intrigue (which critics say stems for unrealistic situations) is in my opinion a near-perfect example of Murphy's law in action. Then, the acting (another prickly point for the critics) is actually very well done given the situations the characters find themselves in. Reynolds, Gylenhaal & Ferguson all deliver solid performances in an era where all the 'acting' talent is reserved for sentimental Oscar-bait movies. As for the plot? strong, fast-paced yet coherent enough for us uninitiated every-day astronauts. And a SOLID twist at the very end.

So, all-in-all, ignore the hate and give this movie a try \m/
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Originality Vs. Execution
daddyxj-112 August 2017
Warning: Spoilers
When I first heard of this movie the first thing that came to mind was a list of movies that had the same similar concept of Ridley Scott's original Alien. They are... CREATURE, FORBIDDEN WORLD, GALAXY OF TERROR, CONTAMINATION, INSEMIOID, LIFEFORCE, ROOTS SEARCH, STAR CHRYSTAL, DEEPSTAR SIX, PARASITE, SPECIES, LEVETHIN, 51, EVENT HORIZON, PANDORUM, PITCH BLACK, DARK UNIVERSE, OUTLANDER, EUROPA REPORT, and let's throw in SUPERNOVA and SUNSHINE for good measure. My point is all these moves have pretty much ripped off Alien in some way or another... A crew is on a mission in a remote area (space, underwater, a city or the frontier) and they come across a creature that kills them off one by one. SO what did LIFE bring to the table that was new? What did LIFE cover that none of these other films cover? What made major stars Ryan Renolds, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Rebecca Ferguson want to star in a movie whose concept was done many times before? Those questions were the reason I had to see this movie and the answer is...the execution.

The movie's originality is in its realism of the concept. What if a situation like this REALLY happened. How would astronauts on the ISS in space deal with it. With the odds against them like a confined space, no weapons and most importantly NO Gravity. And there my friends is the catch. If I were reading the script and I discovered that this creature can maneuver in zero G's like a fish in water then yes I would be hooked. And It doesn't hurt that you have good actors to carry you along. You feel their desperation and their struggle and pain. And with clever direction from Danial Espinosa, you get a good movie that is executed well. No it's not a new concept, and yes we have seen this story before but when you execute it well it becomes original.


Oh, and the alien itself was original too. This monster is pretty not menacing and ugly but approachable. Like a small cute dog you want to pet but look out, it bites...hard. The creature was made for a zero g environment which puts the victims at a disadvantage. They can't run down corridors like in Alien they have to float and push...slowly. Chills yet?

All in all, this is a good movie and the ending does lead itself to possibly have a squeal but I hope it doesn't because it won't capture the magic this film did with the environment it created. At times this movie reminded me of Gravity but with an alien in it. This movie goes on my list as one of the best Alien knock-offs. LIFE is not original but it is executed well.
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People didn't like it because the creature didn't seem realistic
tony-clifton14 August 2017
I've been reading reviews of this movie and it seemed many people didn't like it because they thought this carbon/water based creature was unrealistic. Nothing can survive the vacuum of space, extreme cold and extreme heat, no water and food for years, etc... but there IS an organism that can do that. It's called a "tardigrade" - this little creature can survive lethal amounts of radiation, 1 degree above absolute zero temperature, it can turn its body into glass to survive extreme dehydration, it can survive the vacuum of space and the pressure of many hundreds of meters underwater and survive above boiling temperature.

Coincidentally, shortly after learning about this fascinating creature I came across the movie "Life", and that's probably why I love it so much. What would happen if a hostile alien with the durability of a tardigrade and a lethality of a xenomorph decided to hunt us down? I was thrilled at the prospect! Although some will fault some of the poor choices of the characters, I found them on par with the choices of "Alien:Covenant" characters, but I wasn't going to fault the movie because the premise intrigued me so much. I for one, found it an exciting and thrilling movie!!
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Unbearable "mistakes" by movie characters
dschoenenberger24 March 2017
I was highly annoyed by the unprofessional and error-prone behaviour of the movie characters. Throughout the movie, you will ask yourself: How can he be so stupid? Why is she not doing the obvious? Why are the astronauts emphasising proper procedures, then five seconds later breaking their own rules? How come a former soldier is breaking the chain of command? There is nothing realistic about the behaviour of these characters. In the end, I just hated them. I do not believe that there is a demographic that likes movies like this. Either the script was written by an incompetent author, or the directors are ignorant of what makes a good movie.
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Unbearable to watch if you still has any common sense
iamxuhao24 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
It is rare for me to do a complete password reset to write a short movie review. I do hope that my little effort and many others' effort can alert the Hollywood that this world, the audience, still need a well written script that make sense.

This movie is a total loss and is unbearable to watch. It lacks the very basic (minimal) scientific reasoning about almost every single scene. I will list them as follows:

1. NASA and other space agency across the global are completely out of their mind in selecting astronauts. Every single people in the international space station (ISS) seem to be extremely emotional, unprofessional, and lack the very basic science knowledge. It is awful to hear that many of them have the "Dr." title. It is such a decry to the scientific professionals. These characters do not represent the people with a Phd, and the diligent people working on sending people to Mars, for real.

2. The ridiculous lab setting is a failure even for researching known disease on earth soil. There is a character who is from CDC in the movie. However, I wonder any CDC expert would ever consider attending a mission that is so cutting edge and full of unknown, with the knowledge that the lab is not as good as the ones they used to treat ZIKA in Africa. Those ZIKA labs(tents actually) has better breach protocols and protection than the 200 Billion ISS described in the movie.

3. The life form is too ridiculous. If the producer wants to make a "Alien" like creature, then please do not make a movie that uses the real life as story background. The life form consume water and is carbon based. Yet, it does not boil or explode in the bare space? I do not know if such creature exists, but it is definitely not carbon based. So, please get a scientific consultant before even considering make this movie.

I like watching super hero movies, since they just don't try to hint you to attempt making sense of the movie. It is OK to make a movie that is nonsense, as long as you do not try to deliver it as if it make sense.

I like watching science fictions, since they will at least follow some basic rules. Martians and Interstellar are pretty stretch on scientific mind. However, there is a way for you to at least explain the story. It is very boundary case, but it can make sense. I think this is the very basic principal for a science fiction movie that try to use real world as context.

The final word is that "how did this movie end up getting the ridiculous rating?" When I check the rating, even the rotten tomato puts it to 61%. This is too beyond my sense.
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Gravity meets Alien with a very poor script
saittham7127 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
If you want to experience what the world's most stupid space crew would do when they encounter alien life, then this is the movie for you. You will be spoiled with one idiotic decision after the other, making you wonder if the alien life-form also has telepathic powers, using it to dumb down it's prey.

At the start of the movie the crew is besides themselves with joy when they manage to reanimate a single alien cell that has been dead for billions of years. Even when it starts to replicate and grow very fast, none of them feels any sense of possible danger.

After the alien life-form attacks the scientist, there still seems to be no hurry to just shoot the lab into space. After all, it's just mankind's future that is at stake. No, the most important thing is to save the scientist. This crew would have benefited from a sociopath in their midst or a protocol obsessed captain. That would have saved them many times.

To make matters worse, a huge chunk of the dialogue is redundant. You see that the creature has grown, then somebody says "Wow, it has grown". You see the alien make a fast escape, somebody says "Wow, it is fast". You see the alien being smart, you hear someone say "How smart is this thing?". You see the alien look for air holes, you hear someone say "It is looking for air holes" …you get the picture. Who on earth would write a script like that and not notice the stupendous redundancy?

The movie does have some great tense and gory moments that work well. There just is not enough of them to make it work as a good horror movie. The alien itself starts out very realistic, but looks increasingly CGI during the movie and the many close-ups don't help. It looks too surreal to be threatening.

All in all, it was a huge disappointment to me. With a star cast like that, you would expect more than just a very bland space thriller.
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Life is full of illogical events.
demenydavid26 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
This could have been a really great and interesting movie, but it is ruined by a string of illogical events.

Spoiler alert ! !

Some of these: - Kevin (the alien) seems to be totally fire resistant. At the beginning, one of the scientist chased it in the isolation room and hit it with a blowtorch multiple times. The alien did not even slow down a bit, but directly attacked back without seemingly having any wound. Knowing that only very few materials can resist heat above a couple of hundred degrees, that seems to be very unreasonable.

  • The communication system broke down right at the beginning. No secondary system available in the whole ISS! ! A "radio" cannot cost that much in the age of telecommunication so designers of ISS would not build one or more backups of this essential tool into ISS. And that notion that the communication system would need special coolant ... Does not make sense at all.

  • Scientist are mourning a lost crew member for seemingly a long time while having an all resistant and all powerful alien roaming in their tiny space station putting them in immediate mortal danger.

  • The "genius" biologist let himself to be sucked dry and endangered the entire crew and the entire Earth, by smuggling the alien on his leg. Just because he thought the alien is not evil and just trying to survive.

  • Whatever the crew did worked in favour of the alien. Like if an unseen hand (lame script) wanted to raise tension by always helping the alien. Trying to burn the alien in the tubes, the Soyuz capsule which was meant to push the ISS away from Earth, all pushed the station closer to Earth! Nothing happened benefiting the crew.

  • The female scientist sacrificed herself for nothing. It was evident that the alien can jump with quite an accuracy, so it just jumped back from her dead body to the space station as could be easily anticipated even by me.

  • The fuel just run out at the wrong time. It seemed that if the fuel would last a bit longer, the alien would suffocate. Surprisingly the entire space station lost all the fuel just before the alien died, so it could enter the space station again.

  • Around the end all system failures worked against the humans and for the alien. The 2 escape pods went just the wrong direction. Of course they hit the debris around the space station causing both to take the opposite course the pilots wanted. Kevin (the alien) seemingly learnt on the fly how to navigate a human space capsule safely back to Earth while subduing the scientist in it. He learnt how the control works, what would be the correct entry path, how human system work on the fly. HOW? Moreover the astronaut in the capsule did not anticipate that if the autopilot is let run, than the alien would end up back on Earth. He clicked buttons, took the controls but these were not enough the diver the capsule away from the correct entry course. Could not even go on a burn up or skim off course at least....

There were lot more of these in the movie. Basically the movie had rarely anything logical in it. Even in movie Alien people were not these "unlucky" or movie script so lame. They fought back, they had their moments, the universe (script) did not conspire to destroy them no matter what.
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Good quality sci fi horror
Paynebyname24 March 2017
Just got back from seeing this and I have to say that I thought it was a really good film.

I see that RT only has it at 65% and it's being made out to be a cheap Alien clone but I think that is doing it a dis-service. I felt it was intelligently made, set characters and situations well and created a palpable sense of tension. Criticism that it's a blatant re-run of Alien are unjustified. Granted, it's about an alien life form in space but that to me is where the similarity ends.

Alien isn't the only scary film set in space that is allowed to be made and if Prometheus is anything to go by, Ridley has no right to be the only person allowed to make sci-fi horror films. It captured well the excitement of discovery, the wonder of space and the precariousness of facing any problems up there.

The effects were good, you could see what was going on, there was unease and dread and it kept me thoroughly absorbed and entertained. I don't want to elaborate anymore for fear of giving away spoilers but if you like a bit of tension with your sci-fi, it's worth checking out. Try to avoid the critic reviews if you can as I think going in a little blind will help your enjoyment.
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Solid alien/horror film
austin07312 July 2017
Life was a solid horror/alien movie with a wonderful cast and well shot visuals. It is not a masterpiece especially considering the genre's many great entries, including the alien which seemed to be something that this film has modelled after.

I liked how this film in contrast to Alien seemed very plausible and realistic, focusing on the 'science' part of sci-fi. The mission in search of extra terrestrial living organisms is a very interesting topic and this film made the possibilities of this seem so much more plausible. At the same time Life also brings up an interesting idea of how little we know about the universe that we live in and how inexperienced we are. How alien life form could be so different to our expectations and hence the debate of whether we should explore and the consequences of human curiosity.

It carried a good amount of intensity and suspense and was gory and terrifying at times.The performances were quite good, the cast is pretty great though so there was no surprise there but it did fall flat in writing though, not that it was poor but it's a very straight forwards and rather clichéd trope that we've seen many times even though it was indeed well done.
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Great idea poorly executed
grobertaguilar24 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Alien-esk, but that is not what pisses me off.

Great cinematography. Wonderful concept. Believable sets. Good actors. Horrible execution and completely contrived plot line and plot drivers. I will get to the point..... The creature escapes the lab by escaping into a fire suppression vent!! Assuming it could fit into the 1/2-1/4 inch steel tubing (capable of containing several thousand psi) it would have dead-ended into a steel or carbon fiber cylinder (again capable of containing several thousand psi). The alien would have effectively trapped itself inside a completely sealed system and unable to escape. Movie over, destroy life form at earliest convenient opportunity.

It would have been much more believable and sustained the plot line if the alien could have just escaped out the door when Rory went in to rescue Huge (who causes ALL the problems with his maternal instinct - he calls it "my child" wha WHAT?! - and love for the creature completely at the expense of the lives of his crew mates). Don't even start me on when he hides in his pants - not a party in there either.

I'm done.... there are just too many holes in the construction of the plot for me to even believe that such a creature could exist or enjoy the sinister nature of the creature. Any critic who likes this must have no basic eye for detail such as the solid state of matter and how complex machines such as space craft would be constructed to keep the vacuum of space out side the craft. This space ship is obviously a sieve. this terrible movie disgusts me and I want my money back.

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Storyline as thin as the air in space.
dessa_baxter24 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
*Spoiler alert* So it all starts pretty OK on a space station that is about to receive some earth samples from Mars. We get to meet the crew and some of them are top cast as Ryan Renolds and Jake Gyllenhal. And off course it strikes me that at least one of these are the main character. But that thought passed as soon as Ryan Renolds dies after only 10 minutes in the most stupid way. So the movie starts, I'm awfully confused of who the main characters are, what kind of team they are. Who should I like? Why is Jake Gyllenhal so quiet? Why is the biologist so naive and the questions go on forever. The story line is as thin as the air in space and as simple as a one cell organism. Basically you are watching a indestructible starfish kill one by one in a gory way until everybody is dead. The end is so unoriginal that a 5 year old could make something better.
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Bonechilling, frightening and unexpecting with...empty characters?
eparazak26 March 2017
I'm starting to notice a trend in movies throughout the beginning of the year. Ever since January, we've been getting quite a few different horror/thriller films this year. The results have been mixed to generally positive; Split and Get Out have received positive attention for instance. And now we have Life.

Life is about a group of six astronauts who discover a single cell on Mars. They all research it for a while, the cell grows into a life form, and they discover that the life form is very deadly, and the astronauts must work together to keep it from reaching earth.

I'm going to start with what I didn't like about the movie. My main issue with it has to be the characters. For the most part, they feel very dry and empty. So much so that I couldn't remember a thing about them. There were only two characters who felt like they had any sense of character. The two I'm talking about are Ariyon Bakare's character since he is a scientist and holds a lot of focus in the beginning as the main researcher. Then there's Hiroyuki Sanada's role. His reasoning for wanting to go back to earth makes him the only character I wanted to root for. Aside from that, it's hard for me to care about the movie's characters.

If I were to talk about the things I liked about it, I would like to start with the overall feeling of the movie. After the first act, everything begins to feel tense. There are many tense scenes that have left me feeling horrified, and that's what I believe is the main strength of the movie. If you're going into a thriller movie, you'll expect many intense moments. That's what you get throughout the movie. Something I find very impressive throughout it is that almost the entirety of the film takes place in a space vessel. It's amazing how well it plays into the movie and how well the director, actors and cameraworkers perform their duties and how the movie works so well in such a small, boxed in area. I had my doubts walking in, but what works works really well. Another thing I liked about it was how it ended. I'm not gonna go in-depth with it because that would lead into spoiler territory.

Overall, I thought this movie was very frightening and unexpecting. It had many twists and turns that kept me on the edge of my seat. However, the movie's weakness would have to be the characters. But I can forgive that with its gripping and thrilling plot.
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Utter tripe where all the crew are morons and lifeform defies physics
stuart_davies1 April 2017
Warning: Spoilers
The plot has so many holes it may as well be made of Swiss cheese. The whole story is just littered with so many gaping chasms of logic that it got boring spotting them...

A speeding multi-ton satellite can be caught with a flimsy armature as momentum doesn't exist in the universe the story is based in?

A mission where the architects thought to put in a multi-level quarantine regime, but didn't think to put in mechanisms for destroying any threat within it?

Quarantine that can be broken simply by the crew mechanic opening the door when he got a bit excited?

Crew stop and take the time to have a good cry when members get killed or have heart to heart chats in the middle of an emergency?

A planet residing, carbon based lifeform that can exist in the vacuum and low temperature of space for extended periods?

An initially single cellular lifeform, that has been trained in and given schematics on how to sabotage radio communications.

A crew who aren't fully aware of the concept and practicality of quarantine and so only find out about it in the middle of an emergency?

A space station costing billions that doesn't have backups for essential systems such as communications or computers?

After switching sides and hoping to see the lifeform dissolve a few of the crew, I got frustrated with the awful script and left. Basically a low-brow sci-fi that happens to have a few good actors I was surprised to see in such a poorly scripted, turd of a movie.
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A predictable homage to "Alien," lacking the key ingredients that made "Alien" so terrifying.
lnvicta31 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
"Life" being an "Alien" ripoff should not come as a surprise to anybody; it's been marketed that way since day one. Compared to the majority of what the genre has been spewing out lately, though, a derivative sci-fi thriller can be seen as a breath of fresh air. And in many ways, "Life" succeeds as one. It's fluidly directed, well-acted, sporadically suspenseful, and thoroughly entertaining. The space setting lends itself to impressive visuals and claustrophobic scenarios, of which "Life" has no shortage. The problems with the film lie underneath the surface.

Part of what made "Alien" such a terrifying experience was its bleak atmosphere. The exploration of a cold, desolate, seemingly uninhabitable planet; traversing through the long, white corridors of the ship; the lingering sense of unease, not knowing where the alien was at any given moment. "Life" is more streamlined, its action taking place entirely on board an indistinctive space shuttle. Some scenes serve as clear homages to "Alien," such as David (Jake Gyllenhaal) floating through uncertain corridors mirroring Dallas' maneuvering of the airlocks, and one of the crew members being in isolated danger, forcing the others to decide whether or not to assist them and risk endangering the rest of the crew. These scenes work well enough to generate a modicum of suspense, but their impact is severely reduced because of the fact that we've seen it before. It's difficult to be truly scared when you know exactly what's going to happen to who and when.

Perhaps the biggest issue with "Life" is its characters. None of them have distinct personalities; we're hardly given a chance to get to know them. Some of the most effective scenes in "Alien" were simply watching the crew sitting around and chatting - we saw how they interacted with each other under normal circumstances, we noticed their quirks firsthand, we understood what their priorities were early on; so when crap started hitting the fan, those subtle characterizations made the tension all the more visceral and relatable. In "Life," we're introduced to caricatures who spout bland dialogue and do consistently stupid things. All we really know about them is their jobs, so you don't feel an impact when any particular character bites it.

Still, "Life" is too well-made to be completely dismissed. Sci-fi horror fans will likely find enjoyment from a one-time watch, if only for the constant callbacks to "Alien." It fails to break any new ground, but it's a perfectly serviceable and moderately thrilling addition to the genre.
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Life sucks and then you die
missthing-2393426 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
On behalf of all movie goers with semblance of common sense I would like to caution everyone who passed 10 Grade Science against seeing this movie. You'd spend 2 hours screaming at the screen and if you have a background in a field of science your head will explode. Don't say I didn't warn you...

A carbon based life form on Mars survived in hibernation the billions of years since the planet lost its atmosphere. OK, why not, I can bend that far. So far I am with you.

The crew of the International Space Station gets incredibly lucky in an intergalactic game of catch with the pod carrying soil samples. This is starting to be problematic but stranger things have happened.

But the next scene broke the suspension bridge to my disbelief. The paraplegic biologist with severely misplaced paternal instincts, wearing no protective suit what so ever opens the samples in a box separated from the lab by a pair of kitchen gloves. There is no protocol in place for decontamination or isolation. There is no quarantine, open the door of the lab and you are in the company of the crew waiting to be slaughtered. As things start to go wrong we find out that air is supplied to the lab through vents that can only be shut down one at the time, they lead directly into the life support system of the station and the pressure inside of it is produced by magic. To top it all off a member of the crew who is from the CDC so presumably studied pathogens in Earth-bound labs had no problem with this set up what so ever.

They figure out that this single cell organism needs 20 degrees Celsius and a very specific oxygen and CO2 mix to come back to a live state. Good news to the audience is that when the temp is accidentally lowered the creature goes back to napping. Although we are moving along the story line of Alien which means there will only be one survivor we are made to think that maybe the amateurs who built the lab will not have caused the demise of the crew and the creature is at least in for a good fight. But no such luck. The creature eats a rat and Ryan Reynolds which in turn makes it able to survive the minus 270 degrees Celsius temperature and zero pressure of open space. If it's all that it takes we should consider this before we start colonizing space.

I gave it a total of 3 stars, one for the scenes of zero gravity conditions and one for the acting then deducted one for the ending on behalf of NASA. I don't care how adaptable the Mars alien is it can't go from a single cell to piloting for a successful re-entry in Earth's atmosphere in 24 hours.
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Too bad to even be funny.
intixrev31 May 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Life is the kind of horror that relies on the viewer buying into the idea that supposedly brilliant people will all suddenly choose to to incredibly stupid things.

The movie fails so spectacularly after trying so hard to be realistic in it's portrayal of space travel that it fails to be anything more than a comedy with a few gratuitous jump scares.

At the core of this movie's failings is it's constant need to get it's alien antagonist to places it shouldn't be.

To make the point about brilliant people doing stupid things, barely half an hour in, a supposedly highly trained astronaut decides it would be a great idea to enter the lab containing an escaped and clearly dangerous alien to try and rescue a trapped colleague. This, of course, required opening the single door separating the dangerous alien which just severely injured on crew member from the other 5 crew members.

Really? I'm supposed to accept this as a reasonable decision?

Worse, this isn't even how the alien escapes. This mind numbing stupidity from a supposedly reasonable character is just the setup for even more ridiculous antics.

The decision to enter the room with a dangerous alien was merely the excuse to get the station's engineer into the lab, where he would proceed to use a flamethrower (really?) in a failed attempt to kill the alien. The flamethrower then sets off some space sprinklers (which wouldn't work due to the lack of gravity), allowing the alien to escape into the space station's fire suppression plumbing (which the actual ISS does not have, since, you know, it would't work).

In scene after scene, the movie continues to obliterate any remnants of it's plausibility, from the ISS's fuel being expended in 3 short burns (The Zarya and Zvezda modules carry over 6000kg of fuel combined, which the movie expends in about 30s), or the stations thrusters being inexplicably connected to the station interior to allow the alien inside (despite the fuel for the thrusters being extremely toxic to humans on top of being explosively reactive - i.e., why it's used as rocket fuel), to the crew not being informed of a final fail-safe measure, resulting in a crew member accidentally interrupting it (We're going to push you into deep space if containment fails is hardly some kind of shocking revelation when just getting to the ISS risks fiery death).

The constant and brazen violations of realism (which, let's be honest, could have been caught with 5 minutes on Google, or about 10 seconds of applying some common sense), in a movie that tries so hard to be serious in it's tone and presentation completely destroys any semblance of being either horror or science fiction.

I can not, in good conscience, recommend this movie to anyone who is not inebriated to the point of passing out.
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Catching and stressful
alinasviderska21 March 2017
After recently watched movies about cosmos - Interstellar, Gravity, Arrival - I was expecting to see something similar. Something mysterious, thought-provoking and more or less calm... This movie appeared to be way more stressful! I was nervous almost all the time and some moments were even disgusting. It was nice in a way, because it really catches attention and you are super curious about what will happen next. On the other hand, some moments were just too much. I felt like this movie was more about the emotions rather then having some deep sense.

Still, my 8 goes to unexpected moments and catching plot. This is a nice entertaining movie, making you to overthink the life on other planets. Watch it if you lack stress and adrenalin in your life;)
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Goodnight Alien
petra_ste17 July 2017
Warning: Spoilers
A crew of astronauts faces a first-encounter scenario with a hostile alien life-form, which picks them off one by one.

Sounds familiar? Let's get right to it: it's impossible to discuss this without mentioning Alien (so SPOILERS for that film as well), because Daniel Espinosa' movie borrows so heavily from Ridley Scott's classic that it becomes the proverbial elephant (er, xenomorph?) in the room.

Alien is a milestone of horror/science-fiction where every element – Scott's elegant direction, O'Bannon's taut script, solid performances, phenomenal creature and set design – worked together to create a masterpiece of cinematic dread. It may not be a pleasant watching experience – it's an oppressive, nightmarish film, unlike James Cameron less disturbing but breezier sequel – but it's up there in any serious Top 100 movie list.

How does Life fare against the 1979 titan? Well, Alien is obviously light years above it, but Life does not embarrass itself either. It's better than Prometheus, which was much more ambitious and therefore more awkward in its failure.

Life is... passable. The first forty minutes or so are actually excellent, with an effective build-up of tension as the scientists retrieve samples from Mars' soil and study a fast-growing organism (which they name "Calvin") found in it. Direction, production values, performances and characterization are all above adequate; incidentally, Ariyon Bakare's paraplegic biologist, who sees all his dreams come true before they blow up in his face, would have been a more interesting main character. Also, I would pay money to listen to Rebecca Ferguson read aloud even a History of Fourteenth Century Clavichords.

Then the movie degenerates to an extent. Why is that?

Again, Alien is the key to understand this. Less is more. We see way too much of starfish/octopus-like Calvin once its killing spree begins. When re-watching Alien, it's striking how little we see of the Xenomorph after the chest-bursting scene. I don't think its various on-screen appearances last more than a minute until the climax, and, with one exception and a deleted scene, we never see what he does to its victims. In Life, Calvin keeps bouncing around like an evil CGI rubber ball, dispatching characters in gruesome detail (also, it grows a cobra-like mug to grin at its preys, which was a really silly design choice). As a result, it's far less creepy.

Also less creepy is the location, although that was an inevitable problem once you go for the modern day setting, with a realistically cramped space station. Alien's colossal Nostromo was a haunted house in space, with plenty of dark rooms to explore and darker corridors for the creature to crawl in.

But the real horror of Alien was how it implied a Lovecraftian universe full of mysterious threats well beyond mankind's understanding (that was before Prometheus came out and started putting tags on them, thanks a lot). Here everything is neatly explained and spelled out. That's the organism which caused mass extinction on Mars, a nasty bugger which eats everything, is nearly invulnerable and as smart as the plot needs it to be.

Speaking of that, it's amusing in a meta kind of way how Life follows the tone of Alien's original ending (when the script was still called Star Beast), complete with Diabolus Ex Machina. Watching Life, it's clear the choice to tone down the Xenomorph's powers at the end of Alien was a smart one - unlike Calvin here, who instantly knows how every piece of machinery works, much like the genius sharks in Deep Blue Sea. It may be intelligent, but intelligence doesn't work like that; a space octopus which two hours ago was no bigger than an Escherichia Coli cannot simply glance at the cockpit of a spaceship and know how to pilot it, sorry.

While I can appreciate a dark twist as much as any horror fan, I appreciate it more when it feels a little less contrived and smugly "wah-wah!" - something more creepily ambiguous, like in Carpenter's The Thing, which remains the gold standard for this kind of endings.

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An OK film,better than Prometheus and its sequel - Spoilers to Prometheus and Life
jsmith-5931730 August 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Before watching this. I only watched two alien movies Prometheus and Alien:Covenant. I would say that Life is much better than those two. The personalities of characters are not distinctly portrayed, but this should at least partially result from the nature of the movie: People dying one after another. Thus give very little time for the character that died early. The character in the film are reasonable and heroic compared to the characters in Prometheus. At least they have the "firewall" in their mind and the captain made right decision to abandon crew at times, in contrast to the behavior of characters in Prometheus to let infected crew into the spacecraft.

Some reviews criticized the behavior of Hugh Derry of poking the alien life with hand. I too think it's not the most wise move. But as other comments pointed out. This is a carbon-based creature that shares similarity with us. Maybe Hugh just hadn't imagined that that creature could have been so powerful considering its thin and small form factor.But Dr.Hugh still looked stupid to me in the entire film. Especially when he try to cover for the alien life on his leg.

Maybe it's the unsurpassable stupidity of crews in Prometheus and Alien:Covenant made me immune to stupidity. The rest of the crew looked normal to me. The captain sometimes makes contrary decisions on whether a crew should be abandoned on similar situation. But I think it is understandable given the pressure and continuous death of other crew members.

The ending is not new in the history of alien movies, but it's much better than a "human being saved" cliché in my opinion.
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It's LIFE Jim, but not as we know it...
mrx-7722211 August 2017
I enjoyed this movie. It has some great jumpy moments at the beginning to pull you into this movie's orbital trajectory.

But to enjoy this movie you do have to suspend your essential disbelief that America and a consortium of other product placement regions, sorry I mean Russia, China and Japan, could spend "well over $200bn" putting a science station in orbit and then man it (or should that be "woman it") with half of a dozen of their most stupid scientists (convincingly played by Jake Gyllenhaal, Ryan Reynolds and Rebecca Ferguson). ;-)

If you can do that, you'll love it and even find some of it funny.

And if you've never seen Alien (1979) or Gravity (2013) before you might even find the plot line highly original too. ;-)
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