Nearly a decade after occupation by an extraterrestrial force, the lives of a Chicago neighborhood on both sides of the conflict are explored. In a working-class Chicago neighborhood occupied by an alien force for nine years, increased surveillance and the restriction of civil rights have given rise to an authoritarian system -- and dissent among the populace.
As a huge fan of the sci-fi genre, especially when it involves alien invasions of some kind, movies like this always leave me excited. It doesn’t matter what the audience or critics have been saying (in fact, it never does) because it won’t affect my enthusiasm (in fact, nothing does). By knowing who the cast, director, writers, and producers are, I instantly know how high or low I need to set my expectations. Having this in mind, I was hoping that Captive State could be one of 2019’s surprises. It has an unusual concept that can provide a very unique story if it’s well-told, so the big question is: did they execute all of their ideas successfully?
Unfortunately, no. Not even close. Honestly, the screenplay is so convoluted and messy that I felt “lost” several times. I admire the amount of work that they put into this because they actually did and it shows. The overall concept and its ramifications are all there, the story is indeed interesting. It’s just the way that it’s told that ruins the entire thing. However, the first sentence I heard after the film’s conclusion, came from someone who said: “here I was expecting massive action and …” If you go into your movie theater expecting a straightforward, action-heavy, alien-invasion-type flick and you leave disappointed, that’s on you! From the trailers to its marketing, there was never a message of “hey, this is pure action, humans vs. aliens!”
It tried its best to give the world a different take on this “sub-genre”, let’s call it that. I mean, they had it all: a good cast with the always astonishing John Goodman (William Mulligan) as one of the protagonists, beautiful visual effects that elevated the set design, and the aliens actually have an intriguing physical shape. Sadly, there’s barely any aliens throughout the runtime. There’s hardly … anything. I don’t know what happened post-production, but it feels like they were pushed to deliver something different, so they cut all of the other scenes with extra-terrestrial stuff (I’m certain that they had more to show).
The main issue here is that you can never have a 100% ambiguous story. Arrival is probably the best non-typical alien-invasion movie ever, not because it scarcely shows any aliens or action, but due to its twistful and thought-provoking script. Nevertheless, it still shows a lot! You don’t leave that film disappointed because you didn’t see the inside of a spaceship or an actual alien. You leave perplexed and with your mind blown. Captive State just leaves you confused and wishing for more. A lot more. There’s really not that much more to say on this review without getting into spoiler territory.
Sadly, this is one of those movies that come out every year showing tremendous potential, an innovative and intriguing premise, but that in the end, it just isn’t able to succeed. It doesn’t structure its story and ideas in the most efficient way possible. Its execution is sloppy, filled with hollow characters, no real flow (it feels like it’s just a scene after another scene), too vague, and it profoundly hopes that you didn’t figure out a pretty obvious twist so they can shock you seconds away from the end. It’s not horrible, but it’s definitely frustrating and disappointing.
John Goodman delivers a great performance as always, and the visual effects are striking, to say the least. The production quality is undeniable, they really worked hard to provide the audience with an environment that actually feels real. The first act is pretty good, but it’s downhill from there. Ashton Sanders shares the lead with Goodman, and he’s also pretty good, no doubt about it. However, and this sums up the film pretty well: if I have to check online what the name of the main character was (Gabriel Drummond), then something went terribly wrong. It’s not going to end up being one of the worst movies of the year, but so far, it’s the biggest letdown.
Amblin Entertainment, Participant Media, DreamWorks Pictures, Lightfuse & Gettaway by Rupert Wyatt, Erica Beeney.
Stars: John Goodman, Ashton Sanders, Jonathan Majors, Vera Farmiga.
Genres: Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller
Keywords: usa chicago, usa dystopia alien apocalypse alien invasion
Watch thousands of shows and movies. HBO®, SHOWTIME®, CINEMAX® and STARZ® are also available as add-ons. Starting at USD 5.99 / month and is a steal when we compare the streaming quality and the variety of services on offer. Hulu is gaining traction all over the world. In case you are not from the USA and still want to use Hulu to watch than using a decent VPN is one option that you must explore.
Priced at USD 44.99 most of the significant channels are available on this app. Its a Google product hence the streaming quality under every kind of internet connection is just flawless. They are after-all the market leaders of online videos and live stream. Remember this is also a bundled service and provides for many good entertainment channels. Its a very reliable service, and people residing outside the USA should check for the availability of the channel in their country. If its not available then using a decent VPN service is the best bet.
Priced at USD 44.99 per month. PlayStation Vue is all action and no nonsense streaming option out there. It provides an extraordinary live TV streaming experience. It is currently only available in the USA. In case you still want to use it a descent VPN service is recommended.
We have got solutions for you where you can use VPN’s to have access to the channels using your streaming service. Though you may find tons of VPN brands over the Internet, choosing the correct one can become difficult.
We have picked the best VPN brand for you so that you can peacefully watch sports from your home’s comfort.
We recommend using ExpressVPN to easily access a variety of channels anonymously and securely. ExpressVPN offer blazing-fast VPN speeds to watch on all devices, the best-in-class privacy protection and unlimited premium bandwidth. Get ExpressVPN now for 49% off their 12-month package at only $6.67/month and watch your favorite movies, shows and live streams!