Much like the DNA-spliced creatures that populate the movie's sci-fi landscape, "Annihilation" feels caught between two worlds: it's not quite cerebral enough to appease the arthouse crowd, nor does it boast enough twitch-based action to satisfy fans of the kind of video game it often resembles. "Ex Machina" was perhaps 2015's most pleasant surprise, but "Annihilation" registers as woefully undercooked in comparison.
A bit like The Thing, a lot like Stalker and Solaris, and something like what the Alien prequels wanted to be. It is, in short, mystery box sci-fi. As with any mystery box, there comes a time to put up or shut up, and on that count Annihilation actually does pretty well. Short of transcendent, sure—but what a joy to find yourself in the middle of a zone and not be sure where it's going. And to have the ending linger.
Its formulaic and borrows a lot, but I can dig its atmosphere, and just like Stalker, I like the concept of the whole "laws of nature don't apply" thing. Mostly I ignore the metaphorical intent, then its like a good mash-up I can immerse in.
[T H E A T E R]("Like? No, I don't fucking like!")Two species: the ones who've seen this on a film theater & the ones who Netflix'd it. The most wildly ambitious film of this century bar none. Sorry Lynch and Malick, but the new kids on the block (Garland, Villeneuve) are kicking ass. Didn't gasp this wide since "2001", "Inland Empire" & "The Tree of Life". My jaw dropped so hard on the floor it's on China right now▽
I loved the way it upends audience expectations by starting out as one thing - a pick-'em-off, and-then-there-were-none style genre pastiche - but ends up in the realm of Stalker and Solaris. Contains some of the most extraordinary things I've seen in modern film: that entire lighthouse sequence, with Barrow & Salisbury's bowel-shaking score - had my chin on the floor.
The only thing I regret about Alex Garland's amazing sophomore film is the fact that fucking Paramount put it on Netflix instead of movie theatres. After the backlash from "mother!" I guess they didn't want to risk the release of another "intelectual" arthouse film... And that's why we don't deserve nice things. Moderat playing on that cave scene completely murdered me <3
Loved it! Absolutely refreshing to see something that appears like a blockbuster but ignores all the usual military bravado and command centre BS. Barrow brings the beats in the final scenes with a grinding gusto ushering a true sense of transcendence. My only gripe was how one woman tied up three others that were armed but hey. Beautiful! 4.5 stars
Żuławski's Possession meets The Last of Us. There are some good aesthetical ideas and the gore is amazing but the editing is excruciating, the dialogues are completely off and even the acting feels terrible. I was very much entertained anyway.