The Invasion (15)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner12/10/2007

Two out of Five stars
Running time: 99 mins

Hirschbiegel's troubled remake has several good scenes and is by no means a disaster but it's ultimately disappointing thanks to poor editing and clumsy writing.

What's it all about?
The Invasion is the third remake of the 1956 sci-fi classic Invasion of the Body Snatchers, a film so perfect that it didn't even need remaking in the first place. Nicole Kidman plays Carol Bennell, a psychiatrist who realises that the world is being invaded by body-snatching aliens, courtesy of a virus that can be spread by… er… aliens vomiting on you.

Carol's problems get worse when it turns out that her government official ex-husband, Kaufman (Jeremy Northam) is spear-heading the invasion, since he was one of the first to be infected. Worse still, Kaufman has Carol's son, Oliver (Jackson Bond) for the weekend, so Carol tries to get him back, while her boyfriend (Daniel Craig) searches frantically for a cure with his scientist mate (Jeffrey Wright).

The Good
Kidman is perfectly cast here, though perhaps for the wrong reasons: one of the key tell-tale signs that someone is an alien is that they don't show emotion, so there are several scenes where Carol has to hide in plain sight by exhibiting no emotions whatsoever. Needless to say, this isn't much of a stretch for Kidman, who's often accused of giving cold, emotionless performances.

That said, the transformation effects are quite good, though nowhere near as scary or as effective as they were in Philip Kaufman's 1978 version (Northam's character is named after Kaufman in tribute).

The Bad
Unfortunately, the editing is all over the place and it often seems like entire scenes are missing. It's also clumsily written and wastes what could have been an intriguing political angle to the story, with the alien invasion paradoxically resulting in world peace.

Worth seeing?
In short, The Invasion is watchable enough but it completely fails to hit any of the emotional buttons that the original pushed so brilliantly. A wasted opportunity.

Film Trailer

The Invasion (15)
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Content updated: 17/10/2017 17:58

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