Sunday, November 27, 2011
This Neighborhood Watch Doesn't Screw Around
In some ways a homage to other similar sci-fi, horror, and action movies, yet also offering its own twist on such material, Attack the Block is pretty good. Even a tad unique, perhaps, and the film never really lets up once it gets going. Although there are some racial and economic politics lurking underneath, the movie really doesn’t take any time to explore them, which is probably its greatest weakness. Still it’s really entertaining and a lot of great fun to watch. The largely unknown cast plus Nick Frost is pretty good, and the film has oddly sympathetic main characters despite them being lower-class criminals.
The head of the group, Moses, makes the mistake of killing an alien along with the rest of the group. They beat it to death, thinking that’s the end of it, yet this action only starts a small war between the gang members and a hostile race of animalistic aliens. The film has a surprising amount of gore-violence is merely expected since the movie features thieves and gangsters. Frost’s role is a tad small, and he’s merely present for comedic relief only in a movie where aliens with glowing eyes are killing people and threatening others. Since the group does not have access to guns, it makes things even more suspenseful, as they have to use simple, home made weapons to battle back the menace threatening their lives.
Taking grace notes from Aliens, Tremors, Assault On Precinct 13, and others, Attack the Block is a good addition to the sci-fi and action genres. Considering its tight budget restraints, the FX looks great, and despite it being tightly paced the movie oddly manages to develop its characters enough that the audience actually has a reaction to them. Joe Cornish clearly has a sense of style, pacing, and economy, and thus he will hopefully go on to make bigger and even better movies. Oh and yes I would like a sequel, despite how the film actually turned out. Whether or not that happens remains to be seen. 90