Cinematic Releases: Alien Abduction

Who doesn't like a good old alien abduction every once in a while?

"Alright!!! Everybody have
a marshmallow before
the anal probe!"
Released in limited theatrical venues (easily available on-demand however) via IFC Midnight, Matty Beckerman's “Alien Abduction” is another entry in the seemingly endless found-footage genre, or to put it more precisely, a long form version of Jason Eisener's short segment 'Slumber Party Alien Abduction' from the anthology horror film “V/H/S 2”. 

The plot should be no secret to anyone familiar with this genre and the title itself is a dead giveaway. Interest in this kind of science fiction horror film captured cinema verite lies more in how it happens than what happens. But how does it all gonna look? With 'Alien Abduction', it looks pretty cool.

Not unlike Andrew from the found-footage masterwork “Chronicle”, we're given the point of view of an autistic boy using his hand held camera to broach the outside world as his family on vacation purvey the countryside. As expected, we get the shaky camera as well as the glitches in audio and video whenever an alien attack is near. For the most part it's well directed and the characters aren't insufferable imbeciles deserving of death but a real family with problems and quickness to self sacrifice. The sound design mixes deafening ship roars with blinding lights to terrifying effect, although the aliens sound like they walked off the set of M. Night Shyamalan's “Signs” with their chirping and clicking noises. Save for an effects heavy finale, 'Alien Abduction' exploits the notion of less amounting to more as far as it can go, opting for implication and jump cut glimpses rather than anything clearly visible.

"Look!!!! Sasquatch prints!"
While overtly a B-movie, those keen on alien abduction movies should check it out as soon as possible. Not a film that aims high for greatness, but of the kind of mindless thriller entertainment it aims to be, it's a lot of fun. As a found footage film, yes it suffers from the cliches found within the genre, notably the video distortion which occurs on the camera, signaling whenever an alien attack is on the horizon. That said, it's a popcorn horror flick that proved to be exactly as I expected it to be. It's worth a look at the very least! 

-Andrew Kotwicki