The word underrated is tossed around a lot. Usually, it implies that something has had its quality overlooked. Sometimes, however, that something’s quality has been thoroughly checked and appropriately rated low.
I only ended up watching Skyline on Netflix after taking a writing assignment for InvadeNola. I thought that would be the first/last time that I would have to commit typed words for this movie. After checking out this site’s unique rating scale, I knew I was wrong.
The “film” follows a group of Fast & Furious franchise extras who, after waking up from a wild penthouse party, discover that the city is being harvested by aliens. A short synopsis, yes, but a dead on one I think. I normally don’t drink booze (I prefer the diabetes guaranteed taste of soda), but to those that do, go out and grab a sixer.
I raise my can to the special effects department. The reported principal photography budget was about half a million (and at times it shows), but you can tell that the remaining $20 Million or so was well spent. The aliens and their ships look impressive; fairly well defined and scary looking. Unfortunately, this is the only impressive element. Unless you count the fact that Paul Walker wasn’t cast (this is the kind of movie he’d star in)…
The reason why I refer to the cast as Fast & Furious extras is because of the opening ten or so minutes of the movie. Here, we are supposed to learn who the characters are, their relationships with one another, any personal conflicts, etc. But, for some reason, all of this information is drowned out with songs from 30 Seconds to Mars, fast cars, poolside babes and parties. We watch them get drunk, talk about their art (I think), cheat on one another, and get pissed when they are asked to turn down the music. At this point, I can’t wait for the aliens to kill them.
Why is Donald Faison in this movie, and how did he pull a gun out of nowhere?
Quickly, the movie begins to resemble Night Of The Living Dead, in that the characters hide out and hunker down from the mysterious forces by putting blankets and sheets on the windows, and furniture in front of the door. This plan is sensible and effective for all but Eric Balfour (cast as Jarrod). He requests several times that they make their way outside and get to a boat, because the aliens aren’t hovering over water (even though he doesn’t know if this is true or not). When the group shoots that idea down, he suggests they go to the roof. Again, his plan is universally disliked. Ultimately, he forces his girlfriend to come with him, and they end up getting captured. Good.
Oliver the Concierge, the only sensible and reasonable character in the movie, has to put up with the stupidity and vanity of the losers he is unfortunately trapped with. In the end, his efforts to survive are foiled by a blonde bimbo who opens one of the sheets covering the windows (at which point the aliens take her). Cornered, Oliver pulls a Kurt Russell-style move by turning on the gas stove, grabbing a lighter, and saying “Vaya Con Dios” is his best possible action hero voice. Chug one in his honor.
The lone man of reason
Apparently, Jarrod and his girlfriend are on the roof in an attempt to signal for help. When an army helicopter spots them, it seems that they are safe. Suddenly, an alien tentacle grabs the helicopter and destroys it. And then, with the goofiest look on his face, tears streaming and all, Jarrod screams. If you haven’t passed out yet, you will laugh uncontrollably at this.
This is NOT a movie. This is a 90 minute video made by a visual effects company in an attempt to promote their work and get clients. If you decide to watch this, do so with friends.
Bonus Drinking Game
Take a drink: for every time Jarrod’s plans are shot down by the other survivors.
Take a drink: whenever Oliver has to give a speech about being a man, staying strong, surviving, etc.
Drink a shot: when the actors have to pretend they are witnessing an alien invasion through a telescope.