Comments Off on Terminal Invasion: A guest review by Deadman
To really get the grasp of how far we’ve come, as far as movies and special effects are concerned, we have to look back at where we began. And while I think it’s a shame that big budget movies, with less than palpable story lines, are getting top-notch effects teams and directors the horror movie genre has gotten the short end of the stick. And nothing shows both the beginning of new age special effects and the effects of a tiny budget like the movie Terminal Invasion. Oh, yes, folks. This little gem that most of us forgot. Probably on purpose.
Now. To begin this review I must give a disclaimer for all those FanBoys out there: The Chin is in this movie. Correct! Bruce Campbell, himself, is in this thing. Now before I get beaten to death with special edition DVD copies of Evil Dead 2, let me say this: this movie is horrible! Not even the Almighty Bruce, himself, could save this thing! So let’s dive right in.
The first thing to note about this piece of….film is that it was made in 2002. Why do I say that is the first noteworthy thing about it? Simple. This movie came out when The Matrix was still fresh, as well as other HUGE names like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, and so on and so on. A tiny movie about aliens in a Bumville, USA closed airport wasn’t even a blip on the radar. So there’s the premise, folks: aliens invade a closed airport in Random City, USA and all hell breaks loose.
But before we get into the mayhem that is sometimes so cliche it hurts, we have to start with every typical ‘who-dun-it’ premise: a mysterious stranger. No, really, they never give the backstory for Bruce Campbell’s character. Ever. A snowstorm knocks Jack (Such an original name for The Chin) and his two police escorts down an apparently traversable mountain. They jump into the terminal that’s been shut down. Let the body count begin!
First up on the chopping block: a priest! Boom! Wait, a minute, folks, he wasn’t a victim! Oh, no! He was an alien in disguise coming after Jack. That’s right. They’re after The Chin, himself. Granted, who wouldn’t be? But still. Oh, and in case you’re wondering the reason why, you never find out. Continuing. So let’s meet the cast, folks. There’s stereotype 1, 2, and so on and so on. There is nigh an original character in this whole movie.
Once the whole ‘who’s who’ thing is sorted out and they’re all convinced they’re dealing with aliens there’s a whole bout of morality and a game of ‘moron with a gun shoots someone human’ yay! Can’t have a body snatchers type movie without one of THOSE scenes. Moving on. For some odd reason they believe that they can find out who’s human and who’s not with a luggage x-ray machine. Another death, folks, complete with horrible one-liner.
But oh no! The x-ray machine is now broken, shot up trying to take out the alien. And there isn’t another one. What kind of airport is this?!? ONE machine? Come on! Anyways. We get some more action scenes with bad writing and obvious stunt doubles, galore. While most of this movie is forgettable, there is one aspect that is highly memorable: the CGI. While it’s more than clear that there was better than “I did this project for art class” quality out there at the time, the production company went with “I think my nephew has a computer” budget. There’s more than enough laughable scenes made worse by the effects. Even what could have been a REALLY good practical effects scenes are ruined with attempts to be clever with the camera.
While the plot in this thing is already frighteningly loose it seems to just unravel at the end. Where the alien attempt to explain why they’re there in the first place seems to take a back seat to another horrible action scene. And of course, the whole thing wraps up with Jack spouting some silly, out of place line.
To wrap up. Horrible writing, bad direction, CGI that is bad enough to make you sign up for a designer course, and all of it painfully predictable makes for a terrible movie. Even The Chin, himself, couldn’t save this B-Side floater. However, it IS worth a watch, just to get your laughs in and possible make a drinking game out of it. Thanks for reading, folks!
Watch the trailer to “Terminal Invasion”