AVP Love Child
Alien Lockdown (Creature) (2004): 4 out of 10: An Alien Xenomorph mutated creature type thing escapes inside a secret government mountain top lab. The government sends a commando team led by Michelle Goh and comprising a bunch of people you should not get attached to.
The Good: Alien Lockdown has gotten some good notices, and it is easy to see why. It has some solid acting with expert direction (Abram Cox) and cinematography (John S. Bartley) and a decent soundtrack (John Dickson).
Michelle’s Goh’s lip gloss is quite amazing. Honestly, a superstar performance by the lip gloss and easily the highlight of the film. The creature is also well done but very, very derivative. It is as if Alien vs. Predator was an enemies to friends romance and this was the end result.
Speaking of babies… The CGI on the creature’s babies is not very good, but this is a 2004 made for TV movies, so one needs to grade a bit on a curve as one does.
The Bad: Alien Lockdown is well crafted, so why the low score? Well, As I pointed out in my Alien vs Predator review. You don’t have an Alien on earth only to have the entire movie take place in a hallway. And Alien Lockdown takes place in a hallway.
Over half of Alien Lockdown is a group of… I am going with marines. Walking down one industrial hallway after another almost in a confusing manner, as if they got lost in a parking garage. This goes on way too long. At least twenty minutes more than most can endure.
Since this is a TV movie, there are no scenes of Michelle Goh taking an impromptu shower or graphic eviscerations to keep us interested. Just the same nameless, boring characters following a trail of lip gloss down one hallway and then down another hallway with an occasional person stopping in one place so he can get “picked off”.
I am not against people going down hallways that look suspiciously like USCSS Nostromo while worried about every sound. But too much of a good thing can quickly turn into an endurance test. (This rule applies to anything. Even hot lesbian sex as Blue is the Warmest Color amazingly demonstrated). Alien Lockdown passes that point of endurance test twice with no real character beats or other things breaking up the monotony.
The Ugly: Look, I am sorry if you fall forty to six feet onto concrete you are not walking away with a limp.
Nothing dates a movie faster than its technology. You might not know what a Sony minidisk player looks like or have seen one worn on the wrist, but you may seriously wonder why the latest in military hardware has little mini CDs.
In Conclusion: Alien Lockdown is a very derivative, but for its budget and genre, a well-made film. Unfortunately, it contains one of the most boring stretches of people strolling in single file I have recently endured. And while Michelle Goh’s lip gloss is in a better made movie than say Stephanie Jacobsen’s lip gloss’s turn in The Devil’s Tomb. The Devil’s Tomb was never this boring. A hell of a lot more stupid, but not boring. Why give your character such wonderful lip gloss if all you are ever going to kiss is the floor?