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Solid horror / space opera movie
I'm surprised at the number of harsh reviews for this tight little film. Perhaps in part because I suffered through the big budget total mess that is Independence Day Resurgence the night before, I really appreciated the tension and scripting and acting in LIFE. I liked it so much the first thing I did after the film was check IMDb for the director's info so I could be on the lookout for future films.
It's not without flaws. It's become a trope for scientists in films to breach what one thinks must be protocol and become emotionally involved at their own peril. My husband, for example, was appalled that the lab scientist electrically stimulated "Calvin" starting the entire downward spiral. Confronted with an epic scientific discovery - the first new life, I completely understand taking any action to keep it alive.
And folks have already expressed irritation with the lack of a good containment area. I agree there should have been more fail safes.
But ultimately, we're dealing with people in an extraordinary situation who have been aboard the space station long enough to develop strong emotional bonds. Might they make errors in judgment to save their friends? How difficult is it to sacrifice yourself immediately for the possibility of removing a life form from the ship?
I was on board and didn't find any of the scripting or actions unbelievable.
And again, it's very well acted and the special effects are beautiful.
Very hard to find a smart horror or science fiction film these days and I appreciated this one a lot.
Can't wait to see your next film, Daniel Espinosa!
Eye in the Sky (2015)
taut mature thriller about impossible wartime decisions
I thoroughly disagree with the other reviewers declaring this film a propaganda piece. If anything, it refuses to take sides of an impossible decision; do the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, especially when the likely collateral damage is very very clear well in advance of a strike.
I found myself relieved that I didn't have to make the final call.
Unspooling the action part of the film in real time worked beautifully. One of those films that leaves you literally breathless when the end credits roll, in part because you have been holding your breath with no idea how anything will resolve.
Also perfectly cast - brilliant touch to have the primary military person be portrayed by a woman. Alan Rickman is brilliant and makes you sorry again that he's gone so soon. Also glad to see Aaron Paul on screen in a vehicle where you can appreciate what a great, understated performance can do to ratchet up dread.
well worth seeing - and will definitely have you questioning your own values and appreciating the awful choices the military must make on a daily basis.
Must see film
I absolutely loved this film.
A few things - no spoilers -
It seems that many (but not all) of the folks slamming this movie truly expected it to be a complete prequel to Alien. As has already been said in the media, there are some of the same elements but it is not, and if that's all you're expecting and looking for, this is not the film for you.
I loved Lost and I see some of the same elements in Damon Lindelof's script writing here - more than one way to interpret the story, some mystical elements, and a well constructed plot with parts that drop into place throughout the film. Sure - there are some things completely open to interpretation and that's OK with me. I don't want a 20 minute V.O. at the end of the film addressing each element.
Finally - as seems to be agreed even by the folks who seemed to loathe this film - Michael Fassbinder's performance is astonishing. A very nuanced and well thought out and acted role for him. I will definitely see the film again, in large part to watch someone really at the top of his game in a role.
I've given this film a great deal of thought since seeing it about 24 hours ago and continue to connect more dots making me appreciate it even more.
This film is well done, well acted and gorgeous to look at.
Don't read the reviews filled with spoilers; make your own decision. This one was worth the wait.
Scream of the Banshee (2011)
Best sci fi channel original movie in awhile
So bear in mind I'm grading on a curve for sci fi channel productions - but there were some genuine scares in this one and the special effects weren't execrable. (have you noticed how many of the mutant sea creatures bark and growl?). A somewhat plausible plot as far as these things go and just an overall creepiness that made me tense and even caused me to jump enough more than once to dislodge the cat on my lap.
I continue to hold out hope that after producing the absolutely great mini series Taken and the reboot of Battlestar Gallactica that this channel will rise to the occasion with some decent horror and sci fi offerings. While by no means great, Banshee is at least a step in the right direction.
They Wait (2007)
I am so accustomed to silly, poorly written and acted films on the SciFi channel it was an enormous surprise when this film aired last night. A bit too good of a surprise as I was so disturbed by a scare early in the film I ended up staying up entirely too late - too unhinged to go to bed and turn off the lights.
I now know this wasn't made by the SciFi channel although I don't recall ever hearing of it before or seeing a theatrical release.
Above average acting (the little boy and female lead are more than competent), an original plot and that scare toward the beginning of the film still gives me goosebumps just thinking about it. Really didn't see it coming - sounds as if it may be revealed in some trailer - DON'T WATCH THE TRAILER! Oh, and best of all, a real horror film, not that nauseating torture porn that passes as horror these days.
Also - good cinematography and adequate special effects. There is so little decent horror made these days that isn't just played for laughs or the gross-out factor. Worth staying up to watch - I promise you won't desperately wish to get that 2 hours of your life back!
Shine a Light (2008)
Scorsese is god
It's amazing that Martin Scorsese could capture this performance so perfectly. I'm sure there were more than 10 cameras in motion on or in front of the stage during the entire concert to grab so many perfect shots and it's extremely rare to ever catch one in the footage. It's also wonderful to feel like you're at a concert with a perfect sound mix and seats on stage.
Great editing, great photography, great sound, great band. I thought Scorsese would never top The Last Waltz for the ultimate concert film but like Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and the rest of the band, he just keeps getting better.
Worst film I've seen in years
As much as I dislike saying 'me too' in response to other comments - it's completely true that the first 30 minutes of this film have nothing whatsoever to do with the endless dirge that comprises the following 90.
Having been banned somewhere doesn't make a film watchable. Just because it doesn't resemble a Hollywood product does not make it credible.
Worse yet, in addition to no discernible plot (other than there are lots of muddy places in Russia and many people, even very old women, drink lots of vodka) a number of visuals are so unnecessarily nauseating I'm in to my second package of Rolaids.
As for spoilers - well, the film is so devoid of any narrative thread I couldn't write one if I tried.
Don't waste your time or money, and don't confuse this with good Russian cinema.
low budget, highly entertaining
I'm amazed that this short film is listed on the IMDB - further proof that this is the most comprehensive listing of film and video in the universe.
James E Yaeger is a dramatic, sci-fi force to be reckoned with. Here's hoping we'll be seeing much much more of him in the future.
The Haunting (1999)
Some Movies are MADE bad
This movie was sooo bad in so many ways - and I am even more appalled because it seemed like it had so very much going for it...
* An excellent book from Shirley Jackson * Two cast members with great credentials - Liam Neeson and Lily Taylor, * and what must have been an immense budget
I felt ripped off having only spent $2.50 to rent the video.
Characters disappear with no explanation and are never seen or heard from again, Clearly unbalanced characters are allowed to wander through a house where folks have been decapitated (by psychiatric doctors, no less), The only vaguely interesting aspect of the film was waiting to see which idiotic, vampy get up Catherine Zeta-Jones would show up in next.
Try and get hold of the original version (circa 1963) with Julie Harris and Claire Bloom, directed by Robert Wise. That movie still makes me think twice when I'm alone in the dark and I saw it over 30 years ago.
Actually - rent both versions for a textbook definition of the meaning of wretched excess.