Otherworldly Slapstick Stoners: Alien Addiction (2018) - Reviewed

New Zealand have brought us some of the most original indie comedies, like Housebound and What We Do in the Shadows, but Alien Addiction is something in itself. This 2018 film, with a sci-fi premise, categorically sets the bar on crude, crass comedy that will offend easily. Score!

Shae Sterling, predominantly a Kiwi music video director for artists such as Sheila E and Snoop Dogg, wrote and directed this asinine and juvenile tale – and I mean that in the best way. The story is far from original and the characters make Bill & Ted look like Einstein, but this is part of Alien Addiction’s charm. No, seriously.

The juvenile shenanigans are much in the vein of Canada’s Super Troopers (see what I did there?) and would definitely go down better with a bong and a beer. The latter are the exact nature of the stoner level hilarity and rapid-fire absurdity of Alien Addiction. Expect nothing less, nothing more, but be prepared to laugh, either at its ridiculousness or its genuinely slapstick stupidity.

Alien Addiction is about small town stoner Riko (Jimi Jackson) and his equally air-brained friends who try to keep life interesting in their town in the middle of nowhere (Waikato, New Zealand). However, the crash arrival of two bona fide aliens turns Riko’s mediocre life upside down and the three become tight buddies with one thing in common – their smoke. The plot thickens when an alientologist blogger, Peter Macintosh (played by Thomas Sainsbury), finds out about the aliens and starts a relentless pursuit to capture them for the usual selfish gains of money and fame.

Talk about putting a new spin on ‘smoking some good shit’, Alien Addiction will hit you with cringe after cringe, all in the name of sick fun and seemingly pointless obscenity. This is not a film for connoisseurs looking for intelligent comedy or dialogue with substance. Those very qualities would decimate the essence of the film and utterly spoil it.

Technically, the film is beautifully shot and the score is perfect for the scenes and helps set the pace very quickly with every changing setting. The acting, deliberately childish, is also exceptionally fitting for the believability of its characters and the aliens are truly funny in their own right. Supporting roles by among others Jojo Waaka, Harry Summerfield, Ayham Ghalayini and Veronica Edwards as Riko’s feisty aunty give the characters great variety and spice.

You might find the aptly phrased ‘toilet humor’ annoying or stupid, but it is what makes Alien Addiction so entertaining. Whether you love it or hate it, the film keeps the audience amused while every scene keeps up the comedy and progress of the plot.

Alien Addiction is for the frat house morons and small town stoners in all of us, so do not expect a sophisticated comedy you can watch on a first date. Like a messy house party, this comedy is dirty, noisy and potentially criminal if you do not leave your basic faculties at the door. Prepare for obtuse entertainment of galactic proportions!

-Tasha Danzig