No signs of life
Review by Aaron Haughton
After watching the trailer for Life, I was genuinely interested in seeing it. It looked like it was going to be a promising space thriller, offering those of us eager for Alien Covenant a temporary fix... Well, just take a look for yourself, if you haven't already:
Don't be fooled by this one; the studios were only preying on those of us wanting another gripping alien thriller. And, well, they had to, you know, release it before Alien Covenant drops.
Life is flimsy and mediocre at best. It runs on face value and has nothing deeper or meaningful lurking under the surface; although, at times, it certainly pretends to. The story is rushed. The characters are nowhere near developed; the writers (Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, who brought us last year's Deadpool) only gives us enough character development to set up the major cop out laugh-out-loud, saw-that-a-million-miles-away "twist" ending. Frankly, I was stoked when the credits rolled and the house lights lit up because it meant I could take my girl and scoot.
But, so, anyways, to clear the air from the misinformed trailer, Life isn't really an alien movie; it's a 1950s monster B-movie with CGI gore set in space. Think of it as Howard Hawks' The Thing From Outer Space (later repurposed into the classic The Thing by John Carpenter) only with an ameba hiding behind the other end of the door. This could work on some levels if the characters were properly developed, which isn't something this film takes the time to do.
If you can shut your brain off, you may be able to enjoy it, but there's probably too many eye-rolling moments for that to be possible. Having said that, it's very surprising to see that both critics and mainstream masses alike don't find it as repugnant as I did. So, maybe, just maybe, there's something I'm glossing over here. Feel free to share your thoughts and feelings in the comments.