Annihilation, released in 2018, was written and directed by Alex Garland based on a novel by Jeff VanderMeer. It follows a group of women investigating an enigmatic zone hit by an alien object.
Hello, there! I’m dos Santos, and this is Ulven Reviews, with Movies and series from all over the world and all eras. Today’s review is of Annihilation.
Three years prior, a meteor hit a Lighthouse, creating an area called The Shimmer, that keeps expanding. In these years, the government sent several expeditions to the zone, and no one ever came back.
Kane (played by Oscar Isaac) went in one of these secret expeditions and was the first to come back. He was already considered dead when he returns home, after one year absent. However, his wife Lena (played by Natalie Portman) notices he’s acting very differently.
After the decline of his already strange condition, Lena decides to take him to the hospital. The ambulance they were in is intercepted, and they are sent to some secret facility, where Kane is put in intensive care.
In the facility, Lena meets Dr. Ventress (played by Jennifer Jason Leigh), who’s organizing a new expedition into The Shimmer, with a full female team. Lena decides to join them, to figure out what happened to her husband.
The team was composed of Lena, Dr. Ventress, Anya (played by Gina Rodriguez), Cass (played by Tuva Novotny), and Josie (played by Tessa Thompson). The group enters The Shimmer, and shit goes wild.
Before the actual review, I would like to ask that you also share with us what did you think about the movie and what do you agree or disagree with my view of it. Thanks.
I know the movie is not new anymore, but I’ll make the review spoiler-free regardless, being as vague as possible about the plot. I won’t get into any explanations or interpretations. Now, let’s get into it.
Annihilation has a very compelling story from beginning to end, both as the action as with the allegories it represents. The movie is not too on your face, it has subtlety while dealing with several themes at the same time.
The film keeps a decent amount of tension throughout its duration. The audience can expect thrills from strange and dangerous creatures, the mystery surrounding The Shimmer, and even from the surprises that human nature can bring.
The exceptional cast and performances are a fundamental part of engaging us as an audience. Every character has their personal issues, and the marvelous acting is what gives a believable dimension to them. Natalie Portman and Oscar Isaac are among my favorite actors of our time. And there are more outstanding talent, like Jennifer Jason Leigh and Tessa Thompson.
I didn’t like Anya, portrayed by Gina Rodriguez. She was annoying and quite stupid. She has her function for the plot, but it wasn’t a compelling character to me. Gina Rodriguez’s performance is good, my only problem was with her the character.
I already said that I liked the plot, but to me, what took the movie to another level was the cinematography, production design, and special effects, in combination. These things helped to make an immersive and fascinating ambient, full of strange aspects that ranged from gorgeous to uncanny.
The cinematography is not awesome, but it’s good enough when they are in well-lit environments. The best thing about it is the wide range of colors, even though slightly desaturated to match the tone of the film.
Regarding the settings, the most compelling place is inside the Shimmer in general. Very overgrown plants from the lack of maintenance, colorful mold-like growth all around. Inside the Lighthouse, where the meteor hit, was the most bizarre and amazing.
The special effects are the thing that tied everything up, it’s like the icing of the cake. The last act is where everything gets even wilder and even psychedelic, it’s just stunning. If you still didn’t watch it, do it and come back here to say what you thought of it.
The score of the film is pretty decent. Subtle and slow-paced, with the same feeling of tension present in the movie, so the two fit together quite well. The only thing I felt it lacked was more character, more remarkability.
Annihilation is a type of movie I really like, it stimulates the mind, has a beautiful psychedelic appearance and a stellar cast. I can understand some people not liking it, I’m just not one of them. I will give it 9 Moons.
That’s it for now. Don’t forget to transform into some kind of plant-human hybrid. Bye!
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