Review: Skyline

3 10

PLOT: After a night of partying, a group of L.A hipsters, including expectant parents Jarrod (Eric Balfour), and Elaine (Scottie Thompson), wake up to discover strange lights in the sky pulling people up into alien ships.

REVIEWS: I have good news for sci-fi fans. There’s a great alien invasion movie out, but SKYLINE ain’t it. That film is MONSTERS, while SKYLINE is without a doubt one of the worst films of the year. When I bought my ticket to see this, the theater usher gave me a snide look that seemed to be saying “good luck sucker”, and sure enough, these were ninety of the longest minutes I’ve spent in a movie theater since THE LAST AIRBENDER.

Everything about this film is astonishingly bad. Coming off AVP: REQUIEM, a film which accomplished the rare feat of making the first AVP look like a masterpiece in comparison, SKYLINE is the Strause Brothers (oh sorry, I mean The Brothers Strause) sophomore effort. Supposedly, the brothers financed the whole film themselves; assuring total creative control- lest the studio interfere as they allegedly did on AVP. Judging from the finished product, maybe this could have used a little interference!

Right from the get-go, it’s obvious that SKYLINE’s got serious problems. The worst thing about the film is not the fact that it’s painfully derivative of other, better films like INDEPENDENCE DAY, CLOVERFIELD, and DISTRICT 9, but that throughout you won’t care a whit about any of the characters. Each and every one of them are douche-baggy, L.A stereotypes. Heck, Donald Faison, probably the biggest star in the cast, even plays a special effects guru- who lives in the very penthouse that The Brothers Strause call home.

The only character that gets any kind of development is Eric Balfour’s artist (who seems to get by designing Ed Hardy style tattoo patterns- yuck), who’s travelling to L.A with his pregnant girlfriend, played by newcomer Scottie Thompson. Balfour’s always seemed like a bit of a mediocre actor to me, and if he has more ability, he doesn’t get to demonstrate it here. All he gets to do is a lot of tough guy posturing, and a bit of the old lovey-dovey with his lady friend. As for Thompson, she’s definitely attractive, but like Balfour, she’s playing a stock character, and not much more.

Meanwhile, the other lead characters, as played by the smoking hot Brittany Daniel, and David Zayas (of DEXTER) both overact shamelessly. Even worse, neither is even remotely likable, and when they finally meet their maker on-screen, you won’t care in the least- and may even be rooting for them to get taken out. Not a good thing in a film like this.

Probably the only noteworthy thing about SKYLINE is that the special effects are pretty nifty despite the low-budget. Whatever their shortcomings as directors, they’re obviously pros when it comes to CGI.

However bad the first eighty-five minutes of the film are, nothing will prepare you for the final five minutes, which are every bit as bad as Arrow made them out to be in his review on Arrow in the Head. Yowza! What the heck were they thinking? While leaving the ending open for a sequel, this still runs contrary to everything else in the film, and managed to elicit more than a few laughs from the sparsely attended screening I attended.

Suffice to say, SKYLINE’s a pretty awful film, and it’s no wonder this wasn’t screened for critics. It’s pretty damn bad and likely one of the worst of the year. Hopefully we’ll be spared a sequel, but if not, here’s hoping the Brothers Strause sped a little less time on the CGI, and a little more on getting the story, and characters right, so that the film ends up as more than minor eye candy.

Source: JoBlo.com



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