This movie is definitely stupid, mostly because the characters played by Jones and Duchovny are sporadically, inexplicably stupid. I probably know less about biology than any other school subject, and I’m pretty strongly libertarian on most issues, but even I know that if you discover an alien organism that reproduces really fast and covers two billion years of evolution in two days, you should run to the government, crying like a little girl. These guys try to sit on their discovery, I guess because they want credit and to be involved with the research. And later on, when the organisms evolve to five hundred pound predators, I would know to be afraid of them. These guys just say “let’s try to stay off the menu” and then go back to ignoring the fact that these predators are standing all around them. And I also know that evolution does not work the way it does in this movie. Also, the whole black guy/white guy shtick between Ducovany and Jones is way overdone.
At times I couldn’t tell whether the film is being tongue in cheek, or if it was being extra-stupid. Like when the four characters figure out that fire will cause the aliens to multiply and that, therefore, the plan to napalm them is a bad one. Jones throws a match on a Petri dish which causes the contents to grow all over the walls in a couple of seconds. Then the characters take turns saying things like: “the match,” “the Petri dish”, “matches make fire,” “fire is hot,” ” the organisms grew” “they must react positively to heat,” “napalm makes fire” “fire is hot,” and so on.
This is mostly a comedy and special effects film, though. The special effects are relatively good for CGI. For the most part, that means the aliens are kind of cool looking. Also, I laughed at a lot of the jokes, which must mean the movie’s pretty funny. Orlando Jones makes some pretty lame stuff work with a good delivery, although his material sometimes gets a little bit minstrel show-like calling a judge “your majesty” or trying to strangle a doctor who has just saved his life because doing so entailed sticking forceps up his ass. And some of the dialog is just funny. When the aliens finally evolve to breathe oxygen Jones asks Duchoveny if this is bad news. He says, “only if you’re a human being.” Also, if I repress the memory of Dude Where’s My Car as deeply as possible-which is something I struggle to do every day, I find Seann William Scott pretty fucking funny.
So, as far as movies to have on while your doing something else-like finishing your Va Savoir review, you could do worse. I wouldn’t actually encourage anyone to see this film, but it’s not a bad distraction.
The commentary is pretty typical, from what I actually paid attention to. It’s done by the three male stars and Reitman. They talk about effects and the other actors– oh, if anyone who does these things reads this, please stop pointing out which actors play which roles. There’s credits and the IMDB to do that. [Erich – Go blow yourself – Jonny]
There are also some deleted scenes, the best of which is an alternate ending in which it turns out that Jones has been impregnated by aliens.
- Film, Overall: 5
- DVD Extras: 5
- Story: 4
- Acting: 6
- Direction: 5
- Rewatchability: 5