Australian director Ben Young, whose full-length debut Hounds of Love was once very warmly received by critics, gets involved in a dangerous adventure, deciding to film another fiction for Netflix - EXTINCTION.
Artificial intelligence is becoming increasingly popular due to the extinction of the natural.
The fears of the leading minds of the planet about the fact that some companies now engaged in the development and improvement of artificial intelligence that is self-educating, which may cause problems for humanity in the future, have long been manifested in popular science journals in the form of all sorts of statements and articles.
Extinction is sure to thrill, shock, surprise and impress -- if you're a science-fiction fan.
There is nothing surprising that this topic has also migrated to the world of cinema art, which is responsive to significant changes in the social and political life of society, giving free rein to vivid imagination based on new scientific achievements of civilization.
EXTINCTION - the film with an unexpected turn, which you do not expect in any way. On the subject of whether artificial intelligence has the right to freedom, or is it a thing, property.
EXTINCTION Trailer (2018) Netflix - Video credit: youtube
It looks, an ordinary, average person lives a routine life, and there is nothing unusual that could break this routine. He exists for a given cycle: home, work, meeting with friends. So it goes year after year, almost nothing changes. This is how the hero of the tape lives - Peter (Michael Pena), he has everything standard: work where value him, a loving wife, two daughters, in general, a very boring character.
But here, in the usual course of things, nightmares invade, and Peter sees how the aliens' invasion happens on the Earth. Down from the sky, they destroy the city, ruthlessly kill people. In a dream, Peter sees how he runs away with his family, but will he succeed?
Will he save his family from impending chaos? Gradually, Peter’s real life becomes the shadow of his nightmares that capture him. The wife asks her husband to go to the doctor, but patients at the psychological center only confirm Peter's paranoia - not only he sees those dreams.
And suddenly invasion begins. But who they are, invaders? And who are those living on the Earth now? And why Peter finds having unusual strength that helps him to save his family? Simply watch a fantasy movie EXTINCTION, and you will understand everything.
The film about biorobots EXTINCTION - Photo credit: cinemarodrigo.blogspot
The first half of the sci-fi film EXTINCTION is perhaps the most monotonous and sleepy of everything I've seen this year. We see, at first glance, a collection of almost random very boring scenes, focusing on seemingly irrelevant details. Peter's family is preparing for dinner; people are very leisurely going to work; Alice, Peter's wife (Lizzy Caplan), has irrelevant conversations with colleagues.
The meaning of the first thirty minutes of the film will become clear only at the film's end, and then all these minor trifles and oddities will get their explanation. But I am afraid that not all viewers will watch to this point. It is terribly sterile (this also has an explanation) was the beginning of the film.
The atmosphere changes literally in one second, without any transition. Alice's colleagues had just celebrated her promotion when suddenly half of them are dead, and the second half will die within the next ten minutes. EXTINCTION turns into what the title and the trailer promised - a film about the invasion of ruthless aliens.
The film about aliens invasion EXTINCTION - Photo credit: movienetworkpr
Earth people simply have nothing to respond to the aggressor; it seems that there is no trace of the army in the world drawn by the authors of the film (and there is an explanation for this). There is no one here to repel the aggressor; it is only about individual survival, about saving the family.
And although the EXTINCTION cannot boast of impressive special effects or detailed models of aliens and their weapons, their cruelty and inexplicability of the attack itself create a rather oppressive atmosphere of the second half of the film.
As you understand, the reasons for the invasion and cruelty of aliens will receive a logical explanation almost at the end of the film. And after this episode, you will understand why the first part of the film is so boring and monotonous, why earthlings have no army, why no one pays attention to Peter's visions, etc. One scene will turn upside down everything seen before. Suddenly it turns out that EXTINCTION is not so bad and raises serious enough questions that humanity of this generation may face during their life.
Fortunately, the film has something that favorably distinguishes it from similar films about an alien invasion. No, of course, this plot twist will be not a terrific revolution, and will not knock the spirit out of the viewer. But we must admit that the writers did quality work, taking care that the viewer received not just another stamping, but something fresh and original.
The film about aliens invasion EXTINCTION - Photo credit: imdb
They didn’t even come up with a double, but a triple bottom, and it seems that having received the answer to one riddle, suddenly everything should become clear, but it wasn’t the case, and another mystery lies ahead.
The plot - yes, this is the main highlight of this film. Not to say that it is completely unpredictable, but in a certain area, it creates a kind of intrigue. At least I didn’t see a frank triviality.
The success of the EXTINCTION at first does not look so doomed - the constantly recurring dream of the protagonist induces turbidity to the plot and encourages to wait for the sudden, but, in the end, it gives nothing to games with a worldview.
After prolonged exposure, where unfortunate Peter struggles with a permanent lack of sleep, the film brings down all the power of an alien invasion to the viewer, and it seems that here it is - the most interesting begins, but it was not there.
An unknown force that invaded the Earth does not enter into negotiations, does not take prisoners and is not going to explain its actions - they, whoever it is, just want to destroy humanity.
AI-Themed blogging: EXTINCTION Movie Review - Photo credit: twitter
Narrowing the scale of the narrative to the attempts to rescue a single individual family, the story EXTINCTION is not for giving the narrative a sociopolitical acuity, drama or dynamics. In fact, the heroes simply run from point A to point B to learn the not so terrible truth about the reality in which they live, and will be surprised along with the viewers, and to say a few words into the sunset.
Action scenes filled the gaps, but it’s so inconspicuous that, in principle, you can easily step back for tea and not miss anything.
Initially, everything in this film prepared the viewer for the attack of alien aggressors, which soon happens. But in the course of the film, it turns out that the attackers are not aliens at all, but Earthlings, once forced to flee from their home planet to Mars because of the rebellion of biorobots, or Synths, as Earthlings call them in the film.
After that, much that initially caused a feeling of disappointment becomes clear: why alien weapons are so similar to firearms of earthlings; why do the aliens themselves look like people in spacesuits.
In the second half of the film there was a sharp, as I believe, turn in the plot. Events began to develop completely unpredictable. And this is the main advantage of the film. The film from the standard action movie about the invasion has turned into a fantastic drama. I do not seem to remember such a similar development of the plot. And for this very unpredictable turn, I liked this film because I just did not expect it.
Netflix film about aliens invasion - EXTINCTION - Photo credit: twitter
The tape begins as many of its kind, as if the writers with the director do it on purpose, using stamp by stamp. Here is the plot development scheme: the husband is a hard worker, the daughter is a rebellious teenager, in general, a society of happy inhabitants.
Peter: [narrating] Our world never stops moving. Changing. Evolving. Every day we go about our routines - work, home, family - but who are we? Who am I? You think you know your beautiful wife, your adorable kids, and who you work for. But what if you don't? And the truth, once you knew it, would change everything.
Stamps evolve further. When the nightmares start to disturb the main character, and the family begins to slightly crack to pieces: the wife worries, the children worry and feel upset because of problems between father and mother; in general, the life idyll is disturbed.
EXTINCTION Movie Review - Photo credit: imdb
Peter sees the same nightmare how he gets up, hugs the children, kisses his wife, and goes to work through the same urban landscape. There is no way out - the day of the common average workaholic, stuck in the cycle work home family work continues again and again. Only a strange premonition that soon something will happen brings the diversity to him. It comes with constantly repeating views about the genocide of civilization by alien invaders.
Stress more and more captures the life of the protagonist, and on the advice of a colleague, he decides to turn to the Health Center, where his doubts will move to a new level. Without a big spoiler, a can say that the invasion soon happens after all, and Peter will have to squeeze his fists very hard to clear the way for his family salvation.
Closer to the movie's end, it turns out that the main characters are not at all who they say they are. This is a very unexpected move, although, as it seems to me, the screenwriter and director did not realize all the advantages that such a plot twist gave.
Sci-fi movie EXTINCTION - Photo credit: imdb
The Technical Side
As for the video sequence, extremely important for a fantastic tape, there are no complaints here. The effects are quite qualitative, although it is obvious that the tape is a bit chamber, and this limitation (of the space of the scenes) was made to save the budget. But this does not in any way spoil the picture.
There are no crazy graphics and mega cool special effects. Apparently, the authors of the picture relied on the plot itself, and the film’s budget is not high. Although the idea was good, and it was somewhat unusual to see earthlings as aliens. Filming is cheap, and we see it with the naked eye. Due to poor graphics, it is obvious that the film was shot in the studio.
Visually EXTINCTION is decorated in gray tones - exactly as long as the action does not close in closed rooms; there everything will become even dimmer: semi-illuminated warehouses, dark corridors periodically lit with yellowish or white light.
What else was good in the film is a musical theme that always sounded in time with the actions. Absolutely not annoyed, which is also important for me. But the costumes of the attackers caused laughter and not fear.
EXTINCTION (2018) Ending + Twist Explained - Video credit: youtube
In general, the play of the actors did not cause any complaints, especially very young ones.
The main biorobot in the film was played by Michael Pena the actor, quite famous and having a number of memorable roles on his track record. His partner in the frame is an actress with an unusual appearance Lizzy Kaplan, and their cinema daughter - Amelia Crouch.
The actors play normally; I did not have a sense of overplaying.
The film about biorobots EXTINCTION - Photo credit: fullmoviebase
On A Final Note
An interesting idea and plot twist; issues that may become relevant during the life of the current generation - the main pluses of the film. If you survive the first half of the movie, you may even be able to enjoy the unexpected plot twist in the finale.
The public loves films about aliens invasions, but the EXTINCTION, also, has a very unusual plot twist that raises some unexpected thoughts.
If you are creating artificial intelligence, be sure you really can create it. Synth from the movie is an example of what can happen if artificial intelligence would become rebellious. Let's act responsibly with artificial intelligence not to become aliens in our own Earth.
Netflix film EXTINCTION: Photo credit: dailymotion
The desire of earthlings to take revenge once again fails, which indicates the possibility of making a sequel in the future, which, I hope, will please more with special effects and high-quality graphics than the first film. But I am not sure if there will be a sequel.
In general, the impression is the following: a film for one time, as the authors of the picture could not fully realize the plot potential.
My rating: 5.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes: 27/100
Critics average: 48/100
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