Posts Tagged ‘Aliens’

Planet 51

It’s not often that you watch a cartoon that is just so cool that you don’t care about the sickly sweet kiddie friendly plot, or the message that the producers tried to shoehorn into it about how we’re all the same underneath the different colour skin and how we can all live together in peace and love and rainbows and puppies and all that other crap.  (There are “puppies” in this film, but they’re cool and we’ll get to them later)  Planet 51 manages all this, and it’s just great.

The film revolves around some kind of plot in which the human astronaut lands and becomes the alien.  Something that was done before in Monsters Inc.  But that’s all besides the point.  The point of Planet 51 is to be a complete mockery of “the Ameican Way of Life” in the fifties, and, all the cool big budget horror/sci-fi films that have happened since then.

There’s even a scene in which the citizen’s patrol are being instructed on how to deal with the Alien invasion through a series of instruction manuals, two of which were attacked by sea monsters and attack by a 50 foot woman.  Planet 51 is even better than Monsters Vs. Aliens. (and i loved that film more than I should probably ever admit).

Cartoons really have to overachieve to reach 5 on the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man scale, and while Planet 51 often had me going all Keanu Reeve’s “whoa, that was cool!”  it never had me going “wow, that was fucking dodgy”.  There isn’t really a dodgiest moment, but rather dodgiest characters, and the award is shared.  Both characters are “puppies”.  There’s the alien dog from whichever alien movie had a dog infested with an alien (I think it was Alien 3 but feel free to correct me in the comments), complete with acidic urine and a tongue that was basically a face hugger.  The second dodgiest character was Rover, an unmanned probe that had the personality of a dog.  It was basically Wall-E, but with more personality.  The meeting of the two of them, complete with butt-sniffing had me falling off my chair.

Planet 51 got a gigantic 5 alien smileys.  It rocked.  I just wish I had’ve found it sooner so I would have more time to appreciate it.  As it is, I suspect that each time you watch it there are going to be additional alien movie cliches that you pick up.

The film’s script is alright.  In general, it’s not fantastic and is suitable for kiddies.  however, it does contain some real gems.  “Your daily dose of Chuck” is one of them, but the real winner in the most memorable quote is “The whole planet is full of alien life and you send back pictures of rocks.”  I’m sure this is what happened with the Mars Rover.  The sent the thing there to get interesting pictures of the rocks, so that’s what it sent back.

Normally, this is where I have final comments.  But there is something that needs to be added.  Planet 41 has the best use of “The Macarena” I’ve ever scene.  It starts playing when the aliens drop Chuck’s ipod and all of them fall to the ground holding their ears in agony (think Mars Attacks style, without the exploding heads) until someone shoots the device.   It’s even referred to as a “Heinous weapon” and if that wasn’t sufficient as a cruel sadistic device.  Stop the Madness indeed.

Planet 51 didn’t get nearly as much hype as it deserved, but fortunately, I managed to watch it before it descended into obscurity.  You should too.

Evolution

Evolution starts out with a lot of promise. Directed by Ivan Reitman and starring David Duchovny, dodginess is assured. Throw in a plot containing aliens, Dan Akroyd and Sean William Scott and you’ve got a winner.

The film opens with Sean William Scott saving a blow-up-doll from a burning building and just goes downhill from there. The burning building gets destroyed by an incoming meteor which conveniently happens to contain the alien organisms. With this, the thrill ride begins, taking in interesting sights along the way, including a giant alien bird hunt in a mall and the administering of an anti-dandruff shampoo enema to the giant alien.

The movie has a plot, which is nice and straightforward. This is good as it doesn’t get in the way. Basically, aliens land, they evolve, the military steps in, stuffs it up, and it’s up to the psuedo-scientific heroes to save the day, with a brilliant deduction about Arsenic and Selenium and carbon and silica based lifeforms that would make any movie scientist proud.

Essentially, the plot exists to move the film from one dodgy moment to the next, not that this is a bad thing. However, it does get a little tricky to pick out a favourite.  I have managed to narrow it down to 2 key moments. The first occurs while hunting the giant alien bird in the local mall. Sean William Scott steps up to the microphone and utters the now infamous phrase “ca-caw, ca-caw. Tooky tooky tooky.” The second, a career defining moment for all involved, is the administering of the head and shoulders anti dandruff shampoo enema to the giant alien creature using a firetruck. Despite the ensuing explosion being reminiscent of the giant marshmallow man exploding sequence in ghostbusters, it is no less memorable. As a result of these two scenes, the film gets a Staypuft marshmallow man rating of 5.

Evolution has firmly established itself as one of my top 5 movies of all time. I have yet to get bored while watching it, even though I can almost recite the script. This gives it a massive 5 out of 5 for rewatchablilty. If I didn’t already own this one, I’d have to buy it.

You’d think that the line “There’s always time for lubricant” would have no competition in the category of “Best Film Quote of all time” but, such is the strength of the script, that it doesn’t even win best quote in Evolution.  That dubious honour goes to “ca-caw, ca-caw. Tooky tooky tooky” and a well deserving winner it is.

Do yourself a favour, if you haven’t already seen Evolution, go and watch it, and if you have, go watch it again.

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