Alien Apocalypse (2005) Review: CGI Bugs & Bruce
“Yesterday, they were only astronauts. Today, they’re humanity’s only hope.”
Synopsis: When astronauts return to Earth after a long mission, they find the human race enslaved by aliens, and one of them becomes an unlikely hero.
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Much as it pains me to say this about a movie starring Bruce Campbell, you really don’t need to watch Alien Apocalypse.
As a Syfy movie, the level of quality for this flick was never going to be good. Unfortunately, Alien Apocalypse mostly lacks even the unintentional humor that usually arises from these movies. The acting is more wooden than campy; the effects, while funny, are definitely not enough to pry the movie out of the depths it digs itself into. Honestly, the movie feels more like an extended Saturday morning cartoon than anything else – one of the really shitty computer animated ones that became popular around the 2000s. The plot is thin, the menace is cringeworthy, and everybody makes long speeches (including cheesy voiceovers).
Astronauts Ivan (Bruce Campbell) and Kelly (Renée O’Connor) return from a deep-space mission only to find that in their absence, humanity has been enslaved by interstellar termites who desire wood above all else. After they are inevitably captured, the movie chooses to focus on odd instances of oppression to (I guess) drive home how far humans have fallen – they get fingers cut off and eat gruel like animals. (They also wear some sort of very ineffective leather mask over the bottom of their faces in order to supposedly gag them, but it doesn’t actually work.) Ivan ends up leading a ragtag team in search of the last President in hopes that he will save humanity.
The main problem with Alien Apocalypse (if it can be said that there is a “main” problem) is that the whole thing is so damn serious. You get the feeling that someone who worked on it was like “fuck yes, this will be SUPER EMOTIONAL” and was all into the resiliency-of-the-human-spirit angle, but… it’s just silly. It’s all setup with no substance, and everything feels awkwardly forced. Much as I love Bruce Campbell, he can only be an Ash-type savior of humanity… he just doesn’t have the gravitas to be Spartacus, as the movie seems to want.
Even if you’re drinking (and you really ought to be), there’s just not enough to this uncomfortably bad Syfy movie to warrant your attention. Feel free to skip Alien Apocalypse.
Calamity Brains’ Rating: D
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