Something, Something, Something, Then Something Else

originally posted on Technicolor Commentary

So I caught Skyline on it’s opening weekend and I feel betrayed. Like anyone else who has seen the film, I was tricked by the pretty visuals in the trailer. The setup was convincing enough for me to not notice the fact that the big names involved with the flick were Eric Balfour, Donald Faison, and David Zayas. Yep.

Helmed by two guys with a mostly special effects background, this movie does fairly well with its budget and has some nice looking creatures running around tearing things up. Unfortunately you sit around watching crap and have to wait eons for it. The first scenes of the movie are an extension of the trailer that make you excited to get into the rest of the film, then it cuts to some number of hours earlier and you don’t give a shit about anything anymore.

In my head, one of the worst things ever in media is when the viewer is thrown right into some action and then ripped out of it to go back to “generic time period earlier” for some back story that was not important enough to put in front of it.  Some will argue that the little taste of action is a nice teaser to draw you in and the backstory will fill in the depth needed or some horseshit like that. Cutting away from action just waters it down. When you return to the present and the scene is replayed again, 95% of the time the additional information added to scene tends to be trivial.  Flashbacks generally handle this much better and are less annoyingly abrupt.

I was expecting tons of pretty alien effects, some good battle action and some half-decent acting for most of the film. I was aware that I was not going to see the Holy Grail in this thing, but I didn’t sign up for a bunch of jerks hanging out in a non-penthouse, penthouse apartment with the blinds closed.  If it were more than the 90-ish minute runtime I probably would have nodded off. When we got the bits of creature time, and I mean bits, it looked lovely even though we have seen most of those creature designs before. The actors just waded in the lame dialogue and wasted time until the end.

The end turned out to be another one of my movie aggravations. Whoever wrote the last 7 or so minutes of the flick didn’t bother reading the rest of it. The tone of the last few minutes was completely different from the rest and not in a coherent way. I don’t get how they edited the thing and decided those parts fit together, but I figure they just ran out of money or something. In any case, if the movie had ended five minutes sooner it would have been 20% better.

Fucking pretty blue light tricked me into walking in too.