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Remo D
Posts: 1266
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2000 10:00 pm
Location: Marina, CA U.S.A.


Post by Remo D » Fri Nov 26, 2010 10:55 am

Well, you all tried to warn me away from it, but my curiosity got the better of me.

Okay. SKYLINE uses the CLOVERFIELD concept without the cellphone camera gimmick. Essentially, our characters are dropped into a hideous alien invasion scenario with no clue as to where it came from--no backstory, just instant apocalypse (heavy on the Rapture symbolism, by the way).

That's fine--it works well enough. The problem is that we're stuck with the most uninteresting, cliched bunch of stereotypes for the majority of the film. Our hero isn't ready to be a daddy, but he finds he has no choice. His significant other isn't prepared for "the big move" to L.A. Their party host is a... well, I can't tell what he's supposed to be. Is he a recording artist? A special effects wizard? Whatever the case, he's an instant celebrity with an uber-fancy condo, he's introduced driving to pounding hip-hop music, and he's the one with the gun. Never seen THAT before, eh?

The aliens shine a pretty blue light--anyone who looks at the light gets sucked into the ship. Unless somebody who DIDN'T look at the light catches them first. And if you get hit with the light more than once, you apparently inherit some alien superpowers.

But they go on and on and on with the most punishing, hackneyed dialogue and situations as they re-enact NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD for the umpteenth time. "We've got to stay in here where it's safe!" "No, we have to go out and take a chance!" And the host's girlfriend finds pictures of her man cheating on her on the same camera that was used to take pictures of the invasion. "We'll talk about this later, baby." "Oh, yes, we're GONNA talk about this!"

And the Hispanic guy gets to say "Vaya con dios, you son of a bitch." And the aliens have magic "put the ship back together" powers that reminded me of SUPERMAN IV and the convenient "rebuilding the Great Wall of China vision" power it featured...

There IS one very nifty startle/action sequence set in a parking garage in the middle of the film. The aliens themselves are serviceable 'biomechanoid' creatures--nothing you haven't seen before, but okay. It's too bad the movie ITSELF is such a dull slog... I thought the guys behind AvP: REQUIEM could have made things a bit zippier, at least.

...and yet I'd ALMOST recommend it for one of the most mind-blowingly DUMB fadeouts I've ever witnessed... I'm talking Mr. Jaw meets Mr. Floor here. Now, I've got a friend who thinks the film is a masterpiece--that the ending was one of the most daring and original in all of science fiction. And truth be told, he's certainly right about the art direction in the final scene--I wish the REST of the movie had looked like that. Okay, maybe it's daring, but it begs the question "Okay, THEN what?" I'll spoil it for you privately if you insist, but I'm sure it's all over the place by now. Who knows? You MIGHT like it, and if you do, you won't be the only one. But whoever said "getting there is half the fun" was wrong in this case where I'm concerned... sitting through SKYLINE was an absolute chore.

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