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Annihilation

Director:  Alex Garland
Year Released:  2018
Rating:  2.0

Former U.S. Army Lady/current biology expert Lena (Natalie Portman) accompanies several other women (including Jennifer Jason Leigh and Tessa Thompson) inside a gigantic soap bubble called "The Shimmer" that's formed on Earth and filled with alien creatures and exotic plant life that Lena's husband Kane (Oscar Isaac) just so happened to have 'escaped' from earlier. Garland's a superb visual stylist - his directorial debut, Ex Machina, is a 'pretty' movie - but the script for this (based on the novel by Jeff VanderMeer) doesn't have enough intensity: there are a few 'shock' gore moments but unlike, say, James Cameron, isn't the type to try to 'ramp up' the action aspects or make it consistently tense, choosing instead to marvel at his own set design. The science fiction genre is one where the 'rules of the game' can be tinkered with at its creator's discretion, and while the mechanics of this get funky, it's nothing you haven't seen or read about before.

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