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ALIENS IN THE ATTIC, 2009
Movie Review

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ALIENS IN THE ATTIC MOVIE POSTER
ALIENS IN THE ATTIC, 2009
Movie Reviews

Directed by John Schultz
Starring: Ashley Tisdale, Robert Hoffman, Carter Jenkins
Review by Matthew Toffolo



SYNOPSIS:

In Maine, a group of teenagers must protect their vacation home from the aliens who have taken over the top floor of the dwelling.

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REVIEW:

Aliens in the Attic is a great film for 2/3s of the movie watching experience. And the other 1/3 of the time it's a bit of a storytelling mess. And if the writers and director just stuck with their original ideas instead of giving us the obvious, then this could of been a great film. But right now it's a film that I would show my 7, 8 and 10 year old nieces during babysitting time when it's out on DVD, but not go out of the way and trudge them all the way down the cinema to see it.

Aliens in the Attic is just an okay film that has 3 terrific moments in it. But unfortunately it will probably get lost in the family/adventure shuffle of movies in the last few years.

To breakdown the film, this is a story about how a teenage boy learns to be himself while battling evil midget aliens in the attic with his cousins and little sister. Nothing like a group of aliens attempting to destroy the world to teach someone to not be ashamed for who he is. I wished I had aliens in my attic when I was a teenager as it would of saved me a decade of conflict and struggle. But I guess we're all not that lucky.

In order for these family comedy/adventures to work, the personal struggle of the main character(s) needs to tie in with the overall plot and she/he needs to fight their last hurdle of fear in order to save the day. It's a classic tale but if told right it always works for this genre. That's because kids are all going through the same angst and they understand stories like this.

Aliens in the Attic gives all of the bad cliches and not any of the good cliches of the adventure genre. But it does have a lot of great original moments.

The best thing I liked about this film is that we got to know the aliens who are battling the kids. Most aliens are seen from a distance and only serve as a Jaws like tool for the heroes to defeat. Aliens in the Attic gives us actual scenes of the four aliens and it turns out they are a lot like us. After all, while writing this review I am sitting on the land of North America. A land that my ancestors ripped off from another culture. So these midget aliens are just doing what my ancient relatives did, so they can't be that bad.

Problem is that they don't give us enough of the aliens and many of the situations and conflicts they present are not completed by the time the credits role. Perhaps this had to do with a budgetary concern as I'm sure shooting the aliens wasn't a cheap thing to pull off.

So we're left with the kids who can't tell the grownups what's happening because they will become zombie-like slaves to the aliens. And the kids are immune to their trigger so they are the only ones who can save the day.

The best moments in the film are when the adults do become slaves for the aliens (and eventually the kids too) and they become basically a video game character where only a joystick can control them. If anyone was a fan of Everyone Loves Raymond then you must see this film because their is an amazing sequence where Ray's mom goes kung-fu.

And I had to laugh at the just in case final shot of the film that tells us a sequel can happen but only if this film was a hit at the box office. Something tells me that this is the first and last Aliens in the Attic.


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