Tag Archives: sci-fi

Movie Review: Space Sweepers (2021)

Space Sweepers / Seungriho (dir. Jo Sung-hee, 2021) – A space crew discovers a human-like robot in a crashed space shuttle and decides to cash in on their find.

3/5

In 2092, the environmentally devastated Earth is in its death throes. The rich pay to seek safe harbour in space’s orbiting land, owned by UTS Corporation. The poor have no choice but to remain in their stricken home, struggling to survive the lasting consequences of climate change.

Space Sweepers continues the trend in science fiction, exploring the “what if”s behind our growing class divide that could see our humanity ebbed away with time. Inequity makes for a cold society, where non-citizens labour to clear the debris in orbit for money and the comfort of the upper class.

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Movie Review: Fried Barry (2020)

Fried Barry (dir. Ryan Kruger, 2020) – An alien visitor assumes control of an ill-mannered junkie as he discovers the weird world of humankind.

4/5

Something strange has made its way into Cape Town – wordlessly. Finding its first and only victim in Barry (Gary Green), the body snatcher inhabits the unlikable heroin junkie and invades his being in more ways than one. From there on, his bad trip never seems to end.

When the new Barry returns to Earth, he roams the streets as though he is seeing the world for the first time. He acts upon instinct and mimics the people around him, provoking violence at times. Yet he also performs heroics, albeit unintended, and surprises his estranged wife with uncharacteristic kindness.

It is hard to truly make sense of what he does and perhaps, unnecessary to do so. Fried Barry is at its core an avant-garde experiment, where the experience takes precedence over logic and story. Its original 3-minute film presents a small taste, though it proves inadequate to prepare us for the feature version and its 90-odd minutes of madness to come.

This review was originally published on Fleshcuts. Read the full post here.

Movie Review: Black Box (2020)

Black Box (dir. Emmanuel Osei-Kuffour, 2020) – An amnesiac attempts a new therapy in hopes of reconnecting with his family, only to uncover unwanted secrets in his past.

4/5

Nolan (Mamoudou Athie) sees a hole in the wall. Except he doesn’t remember punching it. The rage doesn’t feel familiar to him, but he hasn’t been feeling like himself for a while now. Months ago, a horrific car accident has left him without any of his memories. He wakes up to a life he has never known and struggles to reconnect with his daughter Ava (Amanda Christine).

When he finds out about an experimental treatment that may recover his past, he takes the chance. He allows Dr Lillian Brooks (Phylicia Rashad) to hypnotise him through untested technology, only to draw out a contorting entity that attempts to strangle him in his dreams.

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Movie Review: Terminator – Dark Fate (2019)

Terminator: Dark Fate (dir. Tim Miller, 2019) – A newly modified Terminator hunts down Dani Ramos, whose survival may just depend on a cyborg from the future and a familiar saviour.

2/5

Warning: Spoilers.

Should Genisys have been the final nail in the coffin, fans would have revelled. But that would only be gravely underestimating the resilience of the T-800, who has over and again promised us otherwise. And so The Terminator is back once more in Dark Fate, which wisely ignores the subpar Rise of the Machines, mildly entertaining Salvation, and the unwatchable Genisys.

For a while, the supposed threequel looks promising. James Cameron’s best works will finally get their due proper end… Or so we were led to believe. Instead, T1 and T2 proved to be for naught as the Terminator succeeds in killing off John Connor, right in the very first act. Easily. Without so much as a scuffle. Just like that, the arduous journey of Sarah and Kyle Reese comes to mean nothing in this new, altered timeline.

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Movie Review: In the Shadow of the Moon (2019)

In the Shadow of the Moon (dir. Jim Mickle, 2019) – Officer Thomas Lockhart spends decades tracking down a mysterious serial killer, who resurfaces every nine years.

3/5

In 1988, several strangers die gruesome deaths across the country at the same time, and the police are no closer to a motive. That is until one victim’s dying words points to an unidentified suspect – a young black woman in a hoodie (Cleopatra Coleman).

Officers Lockhart (Boyd Holbrook) and Maddox (Bokeem Woodbine) manage to track down the alleged serial killer at the train station, only to witness her fatal accident. Not before she calls Lockhart by name and predicts the birth of his daughter.

The incident, followed by the shock of his personal tragedy, sends him spiralling down a dark rabbit hole as he goes on an obsessive hunt for elusive answers. A glimmer of hope comes in the return of the killer nine years later, alive and unaged.

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Movie Review: Ad Astra (2019)

Ad Astra (dir. James Gray, 2019) – Astronaut Roy McBride goes on a deep space expedition to uncover the truth about his missing father, whose mission now threatens the Earth.

Verdict

A meditative and thoughtful space odyssey, Ad Astra is beauty to behold on the surface and within.

5/5
Review

Major Roy McBride (Brad Pitt) steps out of his spacecraft, and perches on a towering antenna on a regular maintenance mission. All appears to go well. Then, a power surge strikes with sudden force. He floats to a neighbouring rig, attempting to shut off the voltage, but the damage is done. His pulse remains steady. He looks down at the majesty of the Earth beneath.

He falls.

It is a heart-stopping opening that does well to introduce the man of the hour in Ad Astra. His stoicism wavers not even in face of death, revealing a hardened heart of a difficult past.

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