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Monday, April 21, 2014

Tribeca Review: 'EXTRATERRESTRIAL' Is Like A Bad Copy of Too Many Other Bad Horror Films



As soon as I saw EXTRATERRESTRIAL on the Tribeca Film Festival slate, I knew I wanted to see it. It is one of the few sci-fi/horror films showing and I had high hopes for it because I generally believe modern indie horror (and especially foreign horror) is far superior to the mainstream U.S. entries in the genre today that use and abuse common tropes without even trying to add any originality or depth.

But not more than twenty minutes into this film, written by The Vicious Brothers (Grave Encounters), I realized that this was just another derivative horror that takes the cleverness of Scream and reduces it to something so cheesy and vapid that it was all I could do to keep my eyes from rolling into the back of my head. The plot doesn't even matter, because you've seen it before: a group of young people (played by a relatively unknown cast only there to scream and look scared on cue) venture to a cabin in the woods and in the middle of the night they are visited by otherworldly creatures that have it out for them. *cue Cabin in the Woods, The Evil Dead, and all 100 mediocre to awful films like them*

One of the newer pet peeves I have about modern horror films is that they're too busy laughing at themselves to even consider their audience. They're having so much fun that they've forgot to let us in on the joke. Is this a horror is it just some cheap parody that isn't even good enough to claim its own wit. How many times can we see this setup, with the inane sheriff (Gil Bellows, who's so much better than this role) and the useless sole survivor who lasts as long as she does only because others sacrificed themselves along the way? It's just so tired. Plus, you can pretty much figure out what will happen mere minutes into the film. Where's the suspense in that?

Rating: F (0 out of *****)

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