Archive for aliens

‘Colony’ Season Two finale: Total Rendition

Posted in Action, drama, horror, Sci-Fi, suspense with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2017 by aliciamovie

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Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Don’t let all the Spoilers alienate you!

So before diving into Season Two, a quick recap – some time ago, the world was invaded by actual aliens, in spaceships with scary technology and all that jazz, and they divided the world up by gigantic walls into blocs. The story of the Bowmans, the Authorities, the Resistance and yes, occasionally aliens, began in Los Angeles, and Season Two branches out into further what-was-California territory.

Our story continues with Will Bowman, despite his job with the Authorities clashing with his newfound awareness of his wifes activities within the Resistance, insisting on going to hunt down his youngest son Charlie in the Santa Monica bloc, of course by himself. He finds Charlie with the help of his old before-aliens-landed partner, who also takes a hell of a lot of chances helping Will and Charlie get out of the bloc, and ultimately, she comes off the worse for it.

Meanwhile, elsewhere, Katie Bowman is concerned about her daughter being taught what sure sound like cult ravings about The Greatest Day, which we gather is some kind of brainwashing about how to treat the alien overlords when they do finally come to lay claim to our planet in person. Katie’s sister Maddie and her ladder-climbing husband Nolan Burgess are attempting to hang on to their cushy Transitional Authority positions by any means necessary, and that includes betrayal most foul, occasionally of each-other.

The eldest Bowman boy, Bram, got himself tossed into a teenager work gang, which of course former-Proxy Snyder has to stick his nose into because, as he would say, leverage is wherever you find it. A shakeup in local TA leadership, handed on down from much higher authority that we see for the first time in Season Two, is bringing down all kinds of heat on Will, Snyder, and Broussard.

Yes, much as he really didn’t want to, Broussard has to come out of hiding with his Resistance cell, for all their sanities’ sake if nothing else. The Red Hand, another Resistance group causing all kinds of trouble for the TA and the Bowmans, prove to be yet another obstacle for Broussard to get anything with his own cell done. Yet word from other Resistance cells outside the L.A. bloc is trickling in, and even shows up in person in a latter episode.

It was, I think, Bram’s involvement with the terrorist attack his little friends at the work gang perpetrated on the alien ship, that began the hunt for the whole Bowman family. Then we had Katie stealing a census list from Maddie, that led us to understand the L.A. bloc is being emptied out for purposes unknown. And of course Will is trying to juggle working with the TA and simultaneously lying to his newly-saddled partner, along with the safety of his family and yes, sigh, his ultimate decision to actually aid the Resistance however he can. Aunt Maddie gets sacrificed by Nolan on the altar of self-preservation, and all the remaining Bowmans have to take to hiding, with only Brussard left from his entire cell being wiped out, to help. And then Snyder, we must never forget he’s a scheming little weasel, gets the news that the entire Los Angeles bloc has been sanctioned for total rendition, which is exactly what it sounds like.

Or is it? The Bowmans have made it out, yes, with that damn gauntlet and Snyder the tracking weasel is with them, but we only saw the spaceships coming for the refugees of Los Angeles. I guess I shouldn’t have expected the gathered ships above the bloc to blow shit up Independence Day style, that’s never really been Colony’s way. But because that’s all we saw, we won’t get to know until Season Three, yes there is one they’re already filming it, if Aunt Maddie was vaporized, sent to the Factory, or what!

Season Two made a conscious effort to expand beyond the small borders of the first Season of Colony, and that’s good because they kind of needed to do that to keep the story interesting. All the Bowmans got their own screen time and own story, which they tried their best to intertwine with the main narrative; most of the time, they succeeded. More than anything, Colony is a human drama centered around a relatively small core of Scifi, so we can’t expect Ridley Scott alien visions – yet. Because the L.A. bloc is now done one way or another, the show will have no real choice but to begin to delve further into the RAP aliens – or risk alienating their audience. But strong acting performances all around and solid story to build on, Season Three of Colony will literally be the one to watch for.

Predators 2010

Posted in Action, drama, Fantasy, horror, Movies, Sci-Fi, suspense with tags , , , , , , , , on August 11, 2010 by aliciamovie

Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Studio: 20th Century Fox

MPAA Rating: R

Director: Nimrod Antal

Review Rating: 6

A group of human Alpha prisoners are marooned on a planet where they are hunted by the ultimate Predators.

Most of the movie is frankly, terrible. While Predators is supposed to be the updated and finest most recent movie for the Predators collection and storyline, it would stand up so much better on it’s own, without attempting to ride on the laurels of the other movies. They tried hard to make connections with the previous movies, including the original Predator way back in 1987 with Arnold Schwarzenegger even. Laurence Fishburne is barely in the movie at all, and personally I think they could have done so much better by him than a psycho looney who’s with the main group for maybe half an hour. Topher Grace stars in as Edwin, the self-proclaimed doctor who turns out to be another complete nut-job, after all that’s why they’re there right? If one of these things is not like the other, or claiming to be anyway, then he probably is. Pre-dict-able.

Danny Trejo of all sorts of fame, my personal favorite is Desperado and From Dusk til Dawn, really is in the movie, but it’s so hard to tell – he dies early and barely says anything. We have a Yakuza who doesn’t talk much again, the female former Isreali soldier, and others, but what little there is in the way of plot is sacrificed for action scenes and the proverbial humans being hunted in the Most Dangerous Game, through the brush. Adrien Brody really has never struck me as an antagonist actor, and the character they have him playing in this movie just doesn’t measure up to well, any of the leaders in the previous Predator movies. He tries very hard, and the character himself does seem fairly smart, such as the instance where he decides to release the Predator on the cross in the enemy camp thinking the enemy of my enemy is my friend and all, but in total Brody always struck me as more of the save-everyone protagonist leader type. And to finish, oh but it’s sad, I can’t even recall how the movie ended – it’s that lacking. So not worthy.

Knowing

Posted in Action, Movies, Sci-Fi, suspense with tags , , , , on May 12, 2009 by aliciamovie

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Reviewed by Alicia Glass

Studio: Summit Entertainment

MPAA Rating: PG 13

Director: Alex Proyas

Review Rating: 8

 

An astrophysics teacher receives a prophetic letter from a time capsule unearthed in his sons’ elementary school, and begins piecing together the end of the world.

 

This one has a plot that’s a bit hard to try summing up in a few sentences, but I did my best. Bearing in mind, I am as far as I know one of the very few people who likes Nicholas Cage as an actor just fine, I thought he did well in things like Con Air and Ghost Rider. The director of this fine film is one of my more favorites, Alex Proyas, who also directed things like The Crow and Dark City, and boy does he go to town with the plot. It’s not as though you can really guess what’s going on even halfway through the movie, but Proyas doesn’t try and wring every last drop of suspense from it either, like Shymalan. And when the big surprise finally does come, even I wasn’t expecting that, and I love it when that happens.

 

So we have Cage as John Koestler, astrophysicist (coincidence?) widower with a young son. And his son Caleb, who of course goes to the elementary school that had a girl plagued with visions 50 years ago when the capsule was laid in the ground, is of course handed the letter from the girl and gives it to the one person who might actually figure out what it is and what it means: his father. From there, after John has translated all the letters numbers with some help and is relegated to running around trying to stop or help the disasters springing up around him, the movie takes a distinct turn for the action sequences. But don’t let that fool you, there’s all sorts of other strange things going on in the shadows, and they have consequences for the entire world!

 

It’s a real shame that this movie was compared far too readily to another Cage movie, NEXT (which I also enjoyed), and most people didn’t care for Knowing for some reason I still can’t figure out. We need more like these, where good plot is tossed together with just-right action and emotional scenes!

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Sadly, Knowing will most likely be lost to the pile of movies overshadowed by Star Trek and Wolverine.

Robot Movies We’ve Loved!

Posted in Action, comedy, Fantasy, horror, Kids, Movies, Romance, Sci-Fi, suspense with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 5, 2009 by aliciamovie

In honor of Astroboy, out October 2009,

TME presents the following list for your consideration:

 

Robot Movies We’ve Loved!

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Virtuosity

Russell Crowe is the bad guy, Sid 6.7, a computer construct grown of the minds of serial killers and given a body that’s near indestructible. Denzel Washington is the ex-cop released from prison to track Sid down. This is one of the few instances where Crowe gets to play a seriously bad guy, and does he have fun with it!

 

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Lost In Space

The Robinson Family is off to chart deep space in the hopes of finding a new home for humanity, only to encounter all sorts of setbacks. Including, one of my favorite parts and the reason this movie is on this list, the amazingly creepy mechanical spiders that attack the ship! Danger Will Robinson! And Gary Oldman as Dr. Smith too, cuz he rocks.

 

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Short Circuit

An 80’s movie to be sure, but adorable nevertheless. Number 5 is a robot designed and built by the military to be a weapon, but a bolt of lightning presents it with a personality and a freedom of sorts, and the civilians he befriends do their best to help him escape the military, who want their weapon back. Not big on special effects, but big on heart, this movie’s sequel is actually just as wonderful as the first; see them both.

 

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Aliens

Right, not exactly the first movie you’d think of about robots, is it? However, the Alien series most often had androids modeled after humans, and that most certainly qualifies. Especially my favorite, Bishop, the droid played by Lance Henrikson, who was even in the first Alien vs. Predator movie as the original human template of Bishop!

 

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Blade Runner

This movie is about as close to a total robot classic as you can get, at least for our generation. The Replicants, the Blade Runner hunting squads, the amazingly quotable one-liners, and of course a fantastic cast. Not necessarily a favorite of mine, but even I can see the intrinstic value in a movie that helped launch an entire generation of Sci-Fi FAN-atics.

 

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Screamers

Yes yes I know, noone’s ever heard of this but me. Still, Screamers is a little-known gem of B-grade Sci-Fi and Horror, and it’s all (mostly) about robots! Basically two groups of people are fighting over resources on a particularly nasty planet, and one group decides to make robots to uh, get their point across, shall we say. And of course the military guys who come in after the air assault to finish the job, find a lot more surprises than they bargained for. Like the fact that the original robots who make those awful noises when they kill (hence the movie name) yeah, they’re mutating.

 

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Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Again, not exactly a robot movie. However, Hitchhiker’s does have everyone’s favorite depressed robot Marvin, voiced by the marvelously stoic Alan Rickman! That, combined with some of the greatest one-liners out there (Don’t Panic!), an odd mesh of dry British wit and Americanized humor, and a wacky cast make for a great movie and not one to miss!

 

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Batteries Not Included

Who hasn’t seen this movie at least once? I remember watching it when I was quite young and falling in love with the cuddly little robots who flew around and let the tenants of the building tend them like they were pets. Reminiscent of WALLE, while Batteries may be a lot older, this movie retains a timeless message about love and caring that everyone should agree with.

 

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Robocop

Ah yes, another timeless movie from our generation. Actually, this one generated a whole series of movies, and yes of course, I’ve seen and own them all. For a whole generation of folk who loved movies like Terminator (who isn’t on this list because that’s TOO obvious), who wouldn’t love a movie about a dead policeman resurrected as a robotic cop out for elite justice?!

 

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Spaceballs

And finally, because I just have to since I know most of you are wondering where the heck the Star Wars references are, I present Spaceballs! If comedy is what you want, it’s hard to beat a feminized version of C3-P0, complete with Joan Rivers voice and one-liners like, “Sorry, I had to make a pit stop. I’m so excited, I couldn’t hold my oil!”

 

 

 Written by Alicia Glass