Okay, this was the movie I was looking for when I published the last review – it took about two days of going through your suggestions before I finally found it!
I should mention – a big shout-out to Matthew Moeykens for being the first one to suggest Report 51…and thank you to the rest of you who came at me with hundreds of other suggestions (it’s been fun going through them all actually!).
Anyway, it was the final quarter of the film that stuck in my mind when I first watched it several years ago – the sort of alien attack in the abandoned town and factory.
To be brutally honest with you – memories tend to cloud over the shit elements in movies sometimes, and you’re left thinking a film is better than it actually is…which is what happened with Report 51.
Great CGI, some of the best alien action I’ve seen in a Found Footage movie…but massive holes throughout and a strange choice of European actors using native English…
It kinda worked…and it kinda didn’t!
After a strange sighting, four friends decide to move in the near woodlands to investigate. Soon their weekend becomes a nightmare and a race for survival.
Why Were They Searching For Aliens?
The biggest ‘head-scratcher’ I took from this plot involved the beginning of the movie – why the fuck were they looking for aliens in the first place?
I mean – did I miss something?
There’s an initial car scene where the engine cuts out, phones go dead etc…then we jump straight into an over-acted argument on a forest road…with a character that didn’t seem to be in the first scene?
Then BANG – a full on alien shit-storm until the end credits roll!
It’s a movie that’s kinda full of strange direction choices…and I’d love to know who put the storyboard together for the plot (because they must have been drunk!).
I was also a bit confused by the over-reliance on text cards throughout the movie…especially at the beginning. Before anything happens on-screen, we have to sit through eight consecutive screens of text that don’t even make sense. Lost in translation maybe?
It’s important to note that certain parts of this movie are VERY enjoyable and a credit to the Found Footage genre.
It’s also important to note that other aspects of the movie made no sense whatsoever…and some were even cringe-worthy!
From what I gather, this is an Italian project, and the language barrier has unfortunately come into play a few times. I’m not having a go – I can’t speak Italian, so the actors are already one step ahead of me in academic circles…
It’s just that these types of Italian-English pronunciations can really get lost in the audio pickup from a camcorder microphone or Skype call.
Now, I don’t want to sound like I’m taking the piss out of the filmmakers here, but the Italian-English angle also brought about some hilarious statements in the movie.
I’m not going to go through them all, because that would be unkind, but when the army officer rings up the cell phone and claims he’s from ‘The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs’…
I pissed myself laughing (and I’m still laughing now!).
But let’s get onto the positive side of the movie, because there are extremely strong positive elements.
The cinematography and the CGI/effects department were excellent for this indie level of filmmaking – I was impressed by them the first time I watched it, and I was impressed by them again the other night.
These two elements also led to a few really fascinating and exciting Found Footage scenes – edge of your seat stuff.
As a package, to look at – the movie deserves full marks.
Unfortunately, the strange plot choices and the Italian-English pronunciations led to A LOT of overacting and campy situations.
I can’t help feeling that this movie would have been a much better experience if they’d stuck to English subtitles and their native tongue.
Definitely worth watching for some excellent scenes…but be prepared for a few ‘head slap’ moments and giggles throughout.