Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The Fifth Wave

I wanted to see The Fifth Wave in a movie theater, but time (and other commitments) got away from me, so I put it on my pay-per-view list.

The story is taken by the novel written by Rick Yancey.

The film is somewhat familiar. It reminded me in places of Red Dawn, Battle Los Angeles (the Aaron Eckhart version), and the TNT series Falling Skies. It reminded me of those earlier works in a good way.

It is the story centered on a family in a small northern town. One day, Cassie (Chloe Grace Moretz) is a typical teenager in high school with a huge crush on Ben (Nick Robinson).  Then this strange metal object appears in the sky above them.  It hovers there for days.  It's the only one in the country apparently. The kids keep going to school although there are fewer and fewer students there as families flee the area.

It's only the first wave of the invasion...next thing is an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) used to knock out all power on the planet...yep, no cell phones, TV, cars with electronic components, no running water, no electricity as the power stations are dead and the planes all fall out of the sky...you know the 21st century citizen's worst nightmare.

Okay also in the second wave, something (you don't know what) makes all the water on Earth go ballistic and flood the land masses. There are some good special effects in these scenes. Huge ocean waves first engulf a ritzy resort area which reminds me of South Beach in Miami, and then the action moves on elsewhere.

The third wave comes in the form of a pandemic which wipes out much of the remaining population.

The fourth wave is the actual invasion but it is not what you'd think.

At any rate, Cassie has gone from being your average high school girl to a gun-toting survivalist. She hunts for her younger brother. They were  forcibly separated when the Army (US) marched into the refugee camp and took the children away. Her parents are both dead by this time.

Cassie is determined to find her younger brother, Sam. Along the way, she meets Evan (Alex Roe) (Hunk Alert!) who makes her forget about Ben.

This is an entertaining sci-fi film. Yes, there is some violence.  They are at war, after all. But it is an engaging story.

The cast members make you root for their characters, mostly. Liev Schreiber in the role of an Army Colonel does a great job as a cold officer sending children off to fight.

I won't spoil the story for you. I will say the survivors band together at the end forming a resistance group (like in Red Dawn and Falling Skies). There are a few unresolved issues which may result in a sequel.

It's a tense movie in places, but it is also short, just shy of two hours. I intended to do some other things while the film was on, but it kept my attention, always a good indicator.

If you like the aforementioned films and television series, check out The Fifth Wave.

Okay, warning, warning!!!! Captain America: Civil War opens in four days...I'll post my review when I've seen it.  You know me and the Cap...

Until next time, take care and enjoy our wide and varied pop culture.

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