heard of an alien abduction in the City? No you haven’t. As Rick Blaine would
say, there are some New Yorkers you wouldn’t recommend poking and prodding.
However, a group of college kids planning to party away the weekend in a cabin
near the lake do not stand a chance in The Vicious Brothers’ Extraterrestrial, which premiered at the
2014 Tribeca Film Festival.
since Kyle is planning to pop the question to April during their romantic
country getaway, he naturally invites his loud mouth buddy Seth and two generic
bimbos along, without consulting her. Meanwhile, she is polishing her
its-not-you-its-me script. Things get so awkward it is almost a relief when the
aliens to unleashing their standard issue strobe light effects. At least before
they left, April’s newly divorced dad asked her to bring back his shotgun and
fishing rod, so we know what that foreshadows—some intense fly-fishing.
Extraterrestrial starts on a
promising note, sounding a lot like an attitude-fueled Kevin Williamson take on
the alien abduction genre, but halfway through it starts taking presenting its
warmed over UFO themes with inappropriate seriousness. While the Viciouses’
cult favorite Grave Encounters tightly
controlled the mood and pace, Extraterrestrial
rattles all over the place. Even the big special effect sequence set inside
the mothership looks nearly indistinguishable from similar scenes in films like
Independence Day and the upcoming The Signal.
the Brothers Vicious have an ace up their sleeve with genre legend Michael
Ironside (as in Scanners, Total Recall, and
V the original series) as Travis, the
super-patriotic conspiracy theorist pot farmer and an old friend of April’s
family. Whenever he growls and swaggers into the narrative, the energy level
surges. Believe or not, Gil Bellows is also not bad as plodding Sheriff Murphy,
who must have the lowest case closure rate of any law enforcement officer in
know Travis has plenty of guns, which would bode well for zombie survivability,
but not so much for alien party-crashers. It makes you wonder what would happen
if they abducted zombies, or better yet, zombeavers. Still, most of the cast
are rather zombie-like. Daytime Emmy winner Brittany Allen has a bit of
presence as April and Jesse Moss could not possibly be any more annoying as
Seth, but the other kids fade so quickly from memory, it is hard to say there
were ever really there in the first place.
pulls off a cool bit of business with a
telephone booth, but it lacks the tension and vivid sense of place that made
the original Grave such a breakneck
monster. Instead, it slowly coasts downhill. Just okay for raucous midnight
viewing, fans should not expect too much from Extraterrestrial, following its debut at this year’s Tribeca Film
Labels: Horror Movies, Michael Ironside, Tribeca '14, Vicious Brothers