- Blue F'n Lights - it's not a J.J. Abrams film, but it still fits
- Star Whores - probably a porno title, but since nobody could have actually liked the script, both terms feel appropriate...
- Underwhelming FX: The Movie - as an Illinois native, it pains me to criticize a special effects company out of Waukegan, but...why not? They're so far north, they might as well be Wisconsinites
- Eric Balfour vs. The Universe - he needs to be stopped, and our world is clearly not up to the task
- Aliens Rape LA - my personal favorite
|Still photo of Donald Faison, mid-pants-crapping|
All right, I guess should get this over with. Jarrod (Eric Balfour)and his girlfriend, Elaine (Scottie Thompson), fly out to Los Angeles to help celebrate the birthday of Jarrod's bestest buddy, Terry (Donald Faison). The pair go way back, which is a nicer way of saying that they don't really see each other too much any more. Terry has become a big time musician or actor or something along those lines. I don't recall any specifics about his career, but he has money, a swingin' pad, a sexy girlfriend (Brittany Daniel) and a sexy secretary (Crystal Reed). After a night of partying and some personal revelations, this fascinating look into group relationships is rudely interrupted by aliens.
|...making everything earlier in the film completely irrelevant.|
|Walk toward the light. Pleeeeeease. End this quickly.|
|About par for the action scenes in this film.|
This is a bad movie. I wasn't expecting a whole lot from it, but I enjoyed the last effort from Colin and Greg Strouse (Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem) and thought this would make for some stupid fun. There was plenty of stupid in Skyline, but precious little fun.
It starts with the acting. I assumed that Donald Faison would be the star of the movie, since he has had the most successful (television) career in the cast and because I saw his interview on Attack of the Show several months ago. I hate sitcoms, so I was never a fan of Scrubs, but he seems like a decent guy and I was interested in seeing him carry a sci-fi movie. Well, he's only in about thirty minutes. Looks like I put all my expectation eggs in the wrong basket. Instead, the dreadful Eric Balfour is the main character. It's not that he's a bad actor (although he is), it's that he brings down every movie I see him in. Here, his motivations are asinine at best, his opinions are stupid, and his character is pretty unsympathetic. Oh, and he hasn't quite figured out how to act convincingly against special effects. Or people, for that matter. Brittany Daniel and Scottie Thompson were a little better, but only because the story didn't focus as much on them. Both women were unreasonably bitchy at extremely inappropriate times (like, you know, when aliens invade our planet), and sometimes their over-serious reactions to things were bafflingly funny. David Zayas has a surprisingly large role for a character that isn't featured in the first third of the film. He wasn't great, but compared to the rest of the cast, he looked like Lawrence freaking Olivier.
|Special effects mean you don't have to act as much, right?|
The ultimate problem with Skyline isn't the acting or the directing, even though both are awful. The main problem is that the writing is idiotic. This film follows a group of people who spend most of the film hiding in an apartment building. From aliens. Aliens that are destroying Los Angeles. So, instead of focusing on people that are, you know, fighting aliens (like the not terrible Battle: Los Angeles), we focus on people who are hiding. That seems like a poor choice. And a boring one, at that. I'm not saying that you can't make a movie like this, but it should focus a lot more on the characters and have someone that the audience can like. In other words, it shouldn't try to be a showcase for special effects. It's not too much to ask, is it? Skyline provides an unsympathetic group of characters, has them act like jerks, and I'm supposed to give a shit about them? Sorry, that's not going to happen.
I would have been fine with Skyline's terrible acting and directing if the movie had been fun. It's not. It's the worst alien invasion movie ever. Well, okay, Alien Predators was a worse film, but Skyline is way less fun because nothing ever seems to happen in the damn movie. To give you an idea of how dull this film is, it is a key plot point for the group of people to work together and put blinds over a window; they are not successful. Just thinking about that scene is making me mad. Thank goodness they chose not to give it a proper ending and left the door open for a sequel. Ugh. The only thing keeping this from zero stars is how hard I laughed during Donald Faison's last scene, and that was only because I assumed he was the main character.