Someone described this as one of the best films put out by The Asylum, that prolific creator of Mockbusters and Sharknado movies.
And, you know, they might even be right.
However, I’m really not sure how much that is worth.
Now, if you ever saw that “classic” seventies super low budget DIY film, Don Dohler’s The Alien Factor, then the plot should be mostly familiar: spaceship crashes, its nasty alien passengers get loose and start killing people.
Admittedly, we’ve got a secret agency which investigates alien activity instead of a friendly alien to explain the situation and hunt down the creatures. And it is merely speculation this time around that the creatures are actually dangerous alien prisoners.
Although, to be fair, they do at least float a new possibility. After all, the E.T.s might have released these nasty creatures deliberately, as a weapon.
But don’t be fooled. Okay, so the plot is a steal from a Seventies cult film. That doesn’t mean this is an Alien Factor mockbuster.
Instead, the basic idea here is to attract those who were really looking for the Mila Jovovich vehicle,
, based on the Capcom videogame.
See how close that is?
Mind you, there is nothing in common between the two films other than that they contain monsters and people hunting them — much as Alien Convergence, for example, has nothing in common with Alien: Covenant other than a certain similarity of names — and aliens (sort of). The hope is that you’ll pick it up by accident in the videostore, I guess.
Although I wonder how that strategy is working in the streaming age.
Now the situation here is that we’ve got Shepherd, the grizzled old veteran of the alien coverup, who runs a secret facility in the middle of nowhere with a small group of soldiers. However, his superior officer sends a young woman for him to train — who will be taking his place.
So far so good.
But this is when things start going wrong in classic Asylum fashion. You see, the young girl who is supposed to be taking over this facility is referred to as a “Specialist.”
That may sound important to you, but basically it’s a private with an attitude.
And we get to see everyone saluting her.
It gets even stranger when we check IMDB and find out that, even though no one in the story ever mentions Shepherd’s rank, he is supposedly a First Sergeant.
Mind you, I think that’s assumed because he has a first sergeant’s patch on his uniform. But that’s not the real problem:
Here we have a senior member of an important secret agency, one important enough that he is running a secret facility (even if he only has a TV program sized staff).
And he’s a sergeant? A non-commissioned officer?
You’ll note that this is meant to be a big facility, with everything underground, too!
This same strange problem showed up in at least one other Asylum film, Bermuda Tentacles, where the big important hero was “the Chief.”
I.E., “Chief Petty Officer.” Yet another non-Com
And he’s ordering officers around.
One has to wonder, though: is this script the work of someone who had no knowledge whatsoever of modern military ranks?
Or did they have a bunch of old uniforms lying around and just changed the ranks in the story to match the patches on the uniforms?
Not that you can really see them particularly well.
Or is this all some sort of massive prank on the audience?
Your guess is as good as mine.
Now the plot includes a lot of war and monster movie cliches: the leader on the routine patrol ends up barely escaping when his men all get killed. The young, inexperienced second in command is forced to take command. The resident genius knows how to do everything. It all comes down to one, last minute, desperate plan. The alien weapons start working when they need them.
We even have an ending stolen from Independence Day.
Or, to sum it all up, you’ve seen it all before —
Although not necessarily all in the same place…