Blu-ray Review: Alien Outpost


Alien Outpost is the latest product of a relationship between IFC Midnight and Scream Factory. As some of you collectors know, IFC was very inconsistent when it came to home video releases. Sometimes they would release a title on Blu-ray, and other times, and often involving a film that deserved a Blu-ray release above all else, they would stick us with a DVD-only release, forcing us to either live with it, or import a Blu-ray from another region. Suffice it to say, this new arrangement seems to be working out for everyone, but especially for fans of both Scream Factory, and films under the IFC Midnight banner.

The Movie:

It took a while to get into Alien Outpost. After 30 minutes, I had yet to see a single alien. This filled me with concern that I was witnessing another MONSTERS: DARK CONTINENT, only with less DudeBro rapey stuff. Shortly after that, the first alien was shown on-screen, and while I’m not crazy with the design(it looks sort of like a walking statue) it started getting a little more exciting, and perhaps even interesting. It takes a while to get where it’s going, and nothing that it accomplishes could be considered any sort of breakthrough for Sci-Fi cinema, but it had me by the end.

One of the problems with Monsters: Dark Continent, aside from the obvious DudeBro misogyny, was that it was also unnecessarily racist in part. The entirety of that film was spent shooting brown people, while spitting out venomous justifications for doing so. I thought Alien Outpost was venturing into similar territory, but fortunately they did something that set my mind at ease. Yes, this is a military Sci-Fi movie, and yes, they are battling Middle Eastern terrorists for much of the film, but it more than earns its Science Fiction credentials once a certain reveal is made.

So no, Alien Outpost is not going to be any new Sci-Fi phenomenon, but it turned out to be more competent than I figured it would be when popping in the disc. Do I recommend it to everybody? Probably not. People who scarcely venture outside of popular culture are probably going to feel like it’s too low budget an affair for their liking. But if you often watch lower-budgeted, indie filims, then you will have the ability to see and enjoy it for what it is.

One thing of note, is that while there isn’t a ton of blood and gore in this one, when there is, it is mostly practical effects. In a film like this you’re going to have to use CG from time to time, it’s inescapable, but it’s kept to a minimum here, and there are a few legitimate splattery moments. A quote on the cover from people involved with Game of Thrones claims it to be brutal and realistic, but don’t go into it expecting non-stop carnage and gore, because that is definitely not the type of movie this is. If you can make it past the 29 minute mark without shutting it off, you can probably find a bit of enjoyment from that point on. Recommended for fans of Sci-Fi/Action and Military Alien Invasion films, similar to Battle: LA, but different in a lot of ways.

The Quality:

As this is a new release, the quality of the transfer is generally not a concern. It’s a film, shot in HD, and it looks the part. No issues to report with the audio, either. Actually, the audio is pretty damn good, considering. This is a 7.1 DTS Master Audio track, and it more than does the trick.

The Extras:

The disc contains a few extras. Not enough to consider it a wealth of such, but enough to escape the barebones label. THere is an audio commentary featuring the Director/Co-Writer Jabbar Raisani, and the DP/Co-Writer Blake Clifton. There are various interviews with cast and crew members, a few deleted scenes, and a theatrical trailer, and that’s pretty much it.If you end up enjoying the film, you have enough to learn a bit about the production, but not enough to make an entire day of it.

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