Release year: 2017
Director: Daniel Espinosa
Screenwriter: Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick
Starring: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rebecca Ferguson, Ryan Reynolds, Hiroyuki Sanada, Olga Dykhovichnaya, Ariyon Bakare
A team of scientists is returning home to Earth with a specimen found on Mars. But as the alien life form is rapidly evolving the team discovers that somethings should stay out in space.
Swedish director Espinosa quickly moved into international ground with his only fourth feature film, Safe House (2012), where he also worked with Reynolds (Deadpool, 2016). When it comes to movies about aliens there tends to be two types; either those where the discovery of life in outer space brings hope to humanity or those where it brings dread. Life starts out looking like the first kind, but it quickly moves over to the type, which brings dread and plenty of it. Espinosa’s movie dares to be quiet and let the tension slowly build up, trusting in its cast to keep your attention. Led by big talents like Reynolds and Gyllenhaal (Prisoners, 2013) as well as Swedish actress Ferguson (The Girl on the Train, 2016), who is currently seems to be quite a rising star, the cast manage to do exactly that. The man Vs. alien in a contained space is a known set-up, but Espinosa makes it feel fresh and leaves you on the edge of your seat with a growing sense of dread. It is a science fiction thriller that moves under your skin, helped by an excellent soundtrack and strong performances by particular an always impressive Gyllenhaal.
Rebecca Ferguson had originally turned down the part of Dr. Miranda North, British, Quarantine Officer, as she thought she would not live up to the standards of the movie. She expressed her anxiety and fear to the producer who advised her to talk with Daniel Espinosa whose philosophy and ideas for the film impressed her enough for her to change her mind and eventually take part in the movie.
Picture copyrights: Sony Pictures