An average soldier wakes from cryosleep to find himself the cleverest man in 26th-century America. Shambolic but consistently funny satire, held together by an intrusive voiceover and weakened a little for sometimes mistaking sneering at the working class for satirising commercialised stupidity.
Astronomers struggle to get the government and the media to engage with an extinction-level event. Patchy and overlong Trump-era satire: when it hits, it hits hard, but there’s about 45 minutes too much baggy stuff here. More focus needed: that said, there are some game performances and a great song.
A boy befriends a stranded alien. Still-powerful Christ allegory dressed up as a child-friendly sci-fi comedy. Works in all kinds of ways, and is technically astounding throughout. What shines is the quiet confidence on display, and Spielberg’s ability to tell story through character moments and shot composition. Recommended.
A man with mental health issues finds that he is the current incarnation of an immortal, and that a war wages for Earth’s survival. Clumsy and often incoherent Highlander / The Matrix / The Old Guardwannabe for lovers of the later Fast and the Furious movies. No-one comes out of this with much dignity. Not great at all.
The 2003 re-edit (actually shorter than the 1979 original version) reinstates some scenes, clarifies some plot and character points and removes others (Ash is no longer a recent crew addition, and so the conspiracy element is toned down). By no means essential, but a chance to marvel again at this still-influential movie.
Classic Sci-Fi re-imagining with stunning VFX but clunky narrative. Tom Cruise plays ‘overwhelmed’ well, but the film is hindered by disjointed modernising of the plot and some stitched in, though well realised, action set pieces. Worth an Ooh laa!
Archaeologists lead a space mission to the creators of life on Earth. Good-looking and packed with great images, this Alien prequel is nevertheless hugely flawed, not least with an abundance of intelligent beings doing really dumb things.