Extraterrestrial (2014) Review

EXTRATERRESTRIAL_UK_QUADExtraterrestrial (cinema release, 2014)

Director – Colin Minhan

Starring – Brittany Allen, Melanie Papalia, Freddie Stroma, Jesse Moss

Run Time – 105 minutes

Release Date – October 29th

Label – Signature Entertainment

Still reeling from her parents divorce, April (Allen) is dragged back to the vacation cabin she spent fond summers at as a child accompanied by a group of friends. Her trip down memory lane takes a dramatic and terrifying turn when a fireball descends from the sky and explodes in the nearby woods. Lead by her boyfriend (Stroma), the group venture out toward the crash site and discover the remnants of a ship from another planet along with footprints that suggest its alien occupants are still alive. The college friends soon find themselves caught in the middle of something bigger and more terrifying than they ever thought possible.

A horror movie that seems to be aimed at a new generation of cinema goers, Extraterrestrial is slick, stylish and still able to scare it’s target audience. A mixture of different sub-genres within the horror genre The Vicious Brothers find a fine balance that works well and as a result the film does not feel dull.

6.April_in_space_Tunnel (1)The Brothers are perhaps best known for sleeper hit flicks Grave Encounters and it’s sequel. Both movies made a healthy profit which means the siblings can make a product that should find an audience. With Extraterrestrial they do serve as writers of the feature but it is only one of them, Colin Minihan, that is in the directors chair.

This may be why elements of the ‘found footage’ sub-genre is used, this is what serves most of the Grave Encounters films, yet Extraterrestrial goes further than that. Filmed in a more traditional manner in places the narration flows easily in and out of these techniques.

The plot, while not revolutionary, is creepy and scary with the tension building throughout as the hapless teens experience yet more traumatic events. The most intense and disturbing part of the feature is the final act, as the aliens get their way with the youths. These moments are not for the faint hearted as things get very nasty.

It is these scenes that deliver on all the promise and built up tension of the rest of Extraterrestrial. The special effects are outstanding for such a feature with the direction complimenting them. It brings to mind James Cameron’s Aliens (1986), especially an in-your-face encounter with something grisly for one teen. The way it is shot feels invasive, taking the viewer way too close to the horror on screen. It proves to be highly effective.17.Seth_Probed_face (1)Michael Ironside is also in Extraterrestrial, making this movie a must-see for him alone.

A slick, well directed alien movie that will enjoyed up by young and old horror genre fans.

8 out of 10.

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James Simpson

About James Simpson

A freelance writer and lover of movies, James is a long term contributor to UK Horror Scene. He has a regular feature on UKHS, World of Horror, as well as reviewing and interviewing when he can. He also writes for Gore Splattered Corner and Space Monsters Magazine. He has previously written for Scream Magazine and Zombie Hamster. Twitter: @JSimpsonWriter