Man, I personally feel a little disappointed in myself. I mean, Invasion Of The Body Snatchers is a true science fiction classic and made the term “pod-person” part of society. I think it is also the sci-fi movie that has been remade the most, since today’s movie is the third remake, but I might be mistaken about that. Regardless, I have seen every version of the movie and personally thought the one from the 70’s was the best. Yet today’s movie is the only version that I own and the only reason for that is because I bought it at a blockbuster closing sale. One day, I will fix that oversight but for now, I am going to enjoy today’s movie, The Invasion.
The plot: When the space shuttle Patriot breaks up during reentry, scattering debris from Dalls to Washington D.C., scientist discover a strange spore attached to the pieces of wreckage. Tucker Kaufman, a member of the CDC that was investigating some of the wreckage, is infected by a piece that he touches and winds up changing when he goes to sleep that night. The next day, psychiatrist Carol Bennell (Tucker’s ex-wife) is talking with one of her patients, who claims that her husband is no longer her husband due to his acting completely emotionless. That night, as Carol and her friend Pam are taking their kids trick or treating, a dog attacks Andy, one of the kids. When they take the kids back to Pam’s house, Andy is physically ok but Carol notices that he is acting distant from the other kids. Suddenly, Carol’s son, Oliver, starts screaming and they discover a strange gel-like organism that was hidden among all the candy and attached itself to Oliver’s hand. Carol removes it from Oliver’s hand and the next day, takes it to her friend, Dr. Ben Driscoll, where he and his colleague, Dr. Stephen Galeano examine it. The next day, Carol notices some strange behavior from some people and as she is taking taking Oliver to Tucker’s house for the weekend, they witness an woman get hit by a car and both the driver of the car and the police act strange. After dropping off Oliver, Carol attends a party with Ben at the home of his friends, the Czech ambassador and his wife, After returning home, Carol is startled by a man claiming to be taking a census but after he tries to break into her home, she calls Ben, who ends up staying the night. The next day, Stephen shows Ben and Carol what he has learned about the sample, just as Ben receives a call from the ambassador’s wife, asking for help with their friend Yorish. After witnessing what happened to Yorish, Carol goes to Tucker’s house to get Oliver, but she finds Tucker there with several people. Tucker explains what is going on and when Carol tries to escape, he holds her down and infects her by spewing saliva on her face. As she leaves the neighborhood, she is chased by several transformed people, and winds up on a subway, where several humans tell her that she can fool the transformed people by hiding her emotions. After being unable to find Oliver, Carol heads back to the ambassador’s house, where Ben offers to go look for Oliver with her while Stephen and his assistant head to an army base outside of the city. They leave just as a transformed ambassador arrives with more transformed men. As they are walking, they witness one of Carol’s patients being captured, who claims that she had fallen asleep. Carol and Ben check Carol’s records and discover the woman had ADEM, a condition that Oliver also has. Realizing that it might lead to a cure, Ben calls Stephen with the information just as Carol receives a text from Oliver, telling her where he is. With the city now under quarantine, Ben breaks through the barricade, then has Carol get out of the car while he leads the pursuit away from her. Carol fakes being transformed and makes her way to Oliver’s location and, after realizing that they both were not transformed, the two manage to escape. While waiting for Ben, they head to a pharmacy, where Carol looks for some medicine to help keep her awake. She discovers a locked room with several people undergoing the transformation and manages to grab a gun from a police officer inside. Ben finally shows up but Carol realizes that he has transformed and, not wanting to kill him, Carol is forced to shoot Ben in the leg in order to escape. As the transformed people begin to surround them, Stephen manages to get in touch with them and directs them to a rooftop helipad where he picks them up. Using Oliver’s blood, Stephen and the other doctors are able to make a cure and begin delivering it across the globe. One year later, the human population seems to be returning to normal and as Carol, now married to Ben, listens to him questioning if the violence will ever end, she remembers a comment Yorish had made, that a world without violence would be a world where human beings ceased to be human.
The Invasion was heavily criticized by the critics, earning only a 19% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. One critic said that while the movie wasn’t terrible, “it was a soulless rehash that was low-rent and reductive.” The audiences didn’t seem to care for it much either as it would wind up being a box office flop, earning only a little over $40 million off of a $65 million budget.
On it’s own, this could be a decent movie but being that it is a remake, I have to say it is terrible in comparison to the original. Nicole Kidman and Jackson Bond (Carol and Oliver) did a good job acting in this movie. Daniel Craig was also good and I thought it was funny that his partner Stephen was played by Jeffrey Wright since Jeffrey played Felix Leiter in Craig’s first two Bond movies. The story was based on the original story, The Body Snatchers, but it could have been done a lot better. Personally, I was disappointed not to hear the replaced people screaming when they discovered normal people. There was a fair amount of drama and action which made the movie more exciting, but as far as actual storytelling went, it was definitely lacking. A decent movie to watch but I would recommend any one of the three previous movies before watching this one.
Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5