South California and special effects

Director of Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem bring Skyline to theaters

movie review by Jennifer Hughes

Metallic aliens, fighter jets, and explosions.

Directed by the Brothers Strause, who also directed Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem and have worked on special effects since 1995, the sci-fi action movie Skyline hit theaters last Friday, bringing in an estimated $4,740,000 to the box-office on its opening day.

Skyline’s effects are well-done and solid. Excluding one oddly out of place slow motion shot, the visuals were impressive from beginning to end. The wide range of shots involving fighter jets attacking the aliens and the aliens attacking our main characters kept the audience interested for the most part.

The movie starts off with Jarrod (Eric Balfour) and pregnant girlfriend Elaine (Scottie Thompson) heading out to Los Angeles to visit Jarrod’s old friend Terry (Scrub’s Donald Faison). After a night of partying, the group wake up to a mysterious blue light that has roused the city. These lights turn out to belong to extraterrestrials who, using the lights to attract humans, like a moth to a flame, immediately begin vacuuming up mankind into their hovering motherships. From there the fight for humanity’s survival begins.

But special effects aside, the storyline needed work and the characters needed common sense. The characters spent the majority of their time arguing about possible hiding places, but never actually get anywhere, spending most of the movie in the same building. And with characters dying left, right and center there was little time for character development.

Though in all fairness the movie is not meant to be a deep or complex one, and focuses mainly on its visuals and action. It was suspenseful and managed to keep some of the audience on the edge of their seats, not knowing what was going to happen next.

What managed to keep the film alive and worthwhile was the love-it-or-hate-it ending, which, though leaving questions unanswered, managed to push the limits of the traditional alien invasion movie. It also lined the story up for a sequel.

In general, it was a decent movie provided you’re entertained by flashy lights and loud explosions. But if you’re looking for something with a little more substance and depth, then this might not be the movie for you. You will either like it or find it a waste of two hours and $12.

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