All posts tagged: aliens

Film Review: “District 9” (updated for Blu-ray)

The highly anticipated film District 9 is opening today, all set to make a killing at the box office (and it certainly deserves the reward. It’s a well-crafted film, both in tone and tale, and brings to the screen the most authentic-looking aliens I’ve seen in quite a while. The question remains, though: is District 9 truly the be-all and end-all of science fiction films that critics have been raving about for the past month? The answer, quite simply, is no. While being a highly original film for the most part, the story does closely resemble the 1988 sci-fi film Alien Nation, which starred James Caan and Mandy Patinkin, right down to one of its central themes. In fact, one could say that District 9 is in many ways just a more updated, adult version of Alien Nation, only with better effects. District 9‘s main premise is that nearly 30 years ago, an alien ship entered Earth’s atmosphere and took up a holding pattern above Johannesburg, South Africa. After three months without contact from the …

The Friday Mixtape: All Souls Edition, 10/30/09

Welcome back. Are you feeling comfortable? Good. Right about now, you’re sitting casually in your seat, perhaps in a chair staring at the monitor, perhaps bundled up on the couch, wrapped in your Snuggie, your laptop buzzing on your lap with the warmth of its underside providing a pleasant sensation there. Occasionally the hard drive skitters and skates, trying to access some connection inside of this digital field of play. And it is a field of play, don’t let it fool you otherwise. Take a good long look at the screen, for instance. Sure, your conscious, active mind sees black letters spelling out the very words you’re reading, but let your eyes haze a moment. Don’t think about meaning so much — just see the black squiggles on the expanse of white, amassed like battalions, one paragraph against another, staring each other down, preparing for the moment to bolt in attack, random “s” characters raising their swords against the myriad numbers of “m,” not to mention the machinations of those vowels, so kind to link …

Film Review: “The Day The Earth Stood Still”

Before we begin, allow me to state for the record that I hate remakes. With very rare exceptions, they tend to be lifeless, pale imitations of the classics which came before them. The remake of the 1951 classic The Day The Earth Stood Still does nothing to change my perceptions of Hollywood’s latest runaway trend. Set in New York instead of Washington D.C., the film focuses on the arrival of Klaatu (Keanu Reeves), an alien who comes to Earth with an ultimatum for mankind. Before he can even finish assembling his true form in front of an astonished gathered military force, a soldier shoots him, nearly killing him. He’s taken to a military academy for study, where one of the scientists allowed to observe him as he is operated upon and allowed to heal is astrobiologist Helen Benson (Jennifer Connelly). When Regina Jackson (Kathy Bates), the Secretary of Defense, arrives with agents in tow and declares that Klaatu is a prisoner of the government and is to be interrogated, Benson finds a measure of empathy …