Falling Skies: what a steaming load of mulch

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Anthony Ravenscroft
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Falling Skies: what a steaming load of mulch

Postby Anthony Ravenscroft » Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:04 pm

Is it a spoiler if I warn people NOT to waste their time?

I've been reading & watching & listening to science fiction for more than 40 years. I take the good with the bad, & often even appreciate the truly awful: one of my favorite stupid movies is Attack of the Killer Tomatoes (though the sequel simply blows dog), & last week I watched Tommy Kirk in Mars Needs Women & rather enjoyed it.

I've just slogged through the two-hour ballyhoo premiere of Falling Skies, exec produced by Steven Spielberg (usually in letters bigger than the title) for DreamWorks Television, thus far starring the lovely Noah Wyle (The Librarian & ER among other creds), showing on the TNT cable network.

Synopsis: The Aliens have invaded, are laying waste to the human race & doing all sorts of awful things to 'em, & various rag-tag bands of beaten-down but stalwart humans slogging toward safety or something.

It's just... well, boring, a tired half-assed non-fan rag-tag agglomeration of beaten-down but stalwart tropes slogging toward cancellation.

The Bad Guys are pasted-together uncredited bits of the Evil Aliens from Predator & Alien (apparently using the former's tactical weaponry), sticking mind-control parasites onto alien hosts a la The Puppet Masters (or maybe the excellent War of the Worlds TV series). I kept drifting off despite the constant explosions & nonstop "heroic music" bed (practically the definition of "melodrama"), but as the shock-trooper bugs don't look capable of building either the towering Giger-esque structures or the ten-foot robots stomping around (instant flashback to The Tripods), my bet is that soon enough we'll learn about their masters & the Real Plan For Earth.

I forgot to work V in there somehow, but you get the idea.

The human characters are empty shells, most of whom will never make it to the lofty heights of "two-dimensional".

Excellent actors being forced at gunpoint to spout lines that're alternately predictable & ludicrous, with the Spielberg label prominently displayed. Where are Abrams & Bey when you really need 'em??

I may watch again after my head's stopped spinning, on the off-chance that & fell asleep during a firefight & missed something of depth.

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Steve Evil
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Re: Falling Skies: what a steaming load of mulch

Postby Steve Evil » Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:46 am

I'll avoid that one then. . .

Anthony Ravenscroft
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Re: Falling Skies: what a steaming load of mulch

Postby Anthony Ravenscroft » Wed Jun 22, 2011 12:34 pm

Well, upon review...

...nope, it really does suck. One review referenced on Wikipedia calls the cast "unconvinced & unconvincing" -- bingo.

There is a single ray of light: the character "John Pope" (Colin Cunningham), leader of the (now-defunct) anarchist band of racist marauders. He hates the aliens with a passion, but doesn't think much more of his fellow humans. Cunningham plays him with loads of dark charm & wit -- he's got more charisma than all the "good guys" in sum, the "John Locke" of the show. For this alone I'll give it a small chance.


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