Movie Review: Skyline (2010)
As a frequent movie-watcher, you are trained to endure a certain level of bad — I mean, it’s just the nature of cinema; most movies aren’t Oscar nominees, hell, most movies don’t even come close to winning any sort of awards. Nonetheless, we watch them. As for the reason, it really doesn’t really matter as it can range from sheer boredom to wanting to get laid that night. What should be made clear to any potential film director, however, is that there is a certain line that should not be crossed because, beyond this theoretic line, there is nothing but harsh reviews and unsatisfied audience members. Unfortunately for Colin and Greg Strause, their latest, Skyline, doesn’t just border on horrible — it’s an abomination.
The film, which was penned by Joshua Cordes (known for being the animation supervisor for Avatar, The Incredible Hulk, Wanted, and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) and Liam O’Donnell (who, well . . . . doesn’t have any credentials except for the fact that he doubled for a homeless guy once in Alien vs. Predator: Requiem), stars Eric Balfour, Scottie Thompson, Brittany Daniel, Crystal Reed, Neil Hopkins, David Zayas, and Donald Faison. As you’ve probably notice, this is a cast of no-names, which pretty much sums up the film’s production value too. However, setting aside the film’s cast and their wooden performances, Skyline also suffers from an incoherent story (which lacks an ending), incredibly forced dialogue, and incredibly bad special effects. As if that wasn’t enough, on top of that, it’s also overlong.
Skyline starts with the cliché aerial view of Los Angeles, before erupting into complete and utter chaos — in fact, consider this one shot, a calm before the storm. From there, we see beams of light descending onto the city. It turns out, these are actually alien spacecraft, which emit a bright light that lures humans in, mutates them, and then warps them onto the mother ship. We are introduced to Jarrod (Balfour) and Elaine (Thompson), who after a long-night of drinking, wake up and are alerted to this impending disaster.
Cue the flashback and we see that the young couple on an airplane, arriving in Los Angeles to see Jarrod’s friend, Terry (Faison), who I believe is supposed to be a successful rapper, but I’m not sure because not only is the script vague, but it’s also not very memorable. Oh well, seeing as I’ve forgotten most of the key-plot points already (just about two hours after seeing the film . . . and taking notes mind you), let me just say that Terry, whether he be a rapper or not, has a hot wife named Candice (Daniel), who he cheats on with his equally attractive assistant, Denise (Reed), and that the five of them must fight for their survival in Terry’s swanky apartment complex. But just as a little side note: These aliens eat brains.
Now for some reason they decide that it’s safe on the waterfront, but perhaps they just saw Signs and figured that all aliens are deadly afraid of water. Once again, this is never really explained. However, it does lead to one of the funniest scenes that I have ever seen; you see, Terry takes his sports car, drives outside, and gets stomped on by an alien (this is in the trailer), but after being squashed he jumps out of the car, without injury.
But words cannot describe how much I hated Skyline. The last time that I have felt so cheated was during The Last Airbender. As I’ve already mentioned before, the acting is dirt cheap, comparable to something you’d find in pornography, the special effects are absolute trash, relying on the classic alien stereotypes, and the editing is just . . . ugh, I have no words to describe it — it’s that bad.
Usually I’d call a film like this a “piece of shit,” however, in the case of Skyline, that’d be insulting to the crap that I took right before seeing it, which, coincidentally, was much more entertaining to sit through.