Alien Trespass R.W. Goodwin

Alien Trespass R.W. Goodwin
A common criticism levelled at a show like Mystery Science Theater 3000 by its detractors is that the old, low-budget science fiction films are inept enough on their own that any additional mockery from the silhouetted peanut gallery is redundant, and a little mean. The makers of Alien Trespass seem to agree. Targeting more high-end '50s B-movies like War of the Worlds and The Day the Earth Stood Still, rather than the Z-grade fare ribbed on MST3K, Alien Trespass spends so much time trying to look like what it's spoofing that it forgets to actually spoof it. In the faux-newsreel footage that opens the film, we learn that the sci-fi opus we're about to see, rumoured to be a classic of the genre, was "rediscovered" after having been buried during a contract dispute between a studio head and lead actor M. Eric McCormack (played by "grandson" Eric McCormack). In the film proper, McCormack plays a pipe-smoking scientist whose body becomes inhabited by a peaceful alien in search of a killer rubber monster. The cast performs this with such self-conscious irony ― every line reading seems to be ensconced with quotation marks ― that they evidently didn't realize that director R.W. Goodwin hasn't given them any actual jokes to deliver, apparently believing that putting them in '50s clothing and throwing in a rubber monster counts as satire. This film doesn't even work as emulation: the shot compositions, fluid camerawork, overacting and occasional digital effects would stick out like a sore thumb in any '50s B-movie. Poorly paced, thoroughly unconvincing and devoid of any laughs whatsoever, Alien Trespass is so unwatchable it might actually make you reconsider your opinion of This Island Earth. DVD extras include a few mockumentaries keeping up the laboured "found movie" conceit, including "vintage" cast interviews with "Edwin R. Burroughs" (har-dee-har-har). Also included is an interview with director Goodwin, who says, "As I got older and revisited some of these wonderful '50s movies, I realized that… they were sort of inadvertently funny." Ladies and gentlemen, I think we've found the most behind-the-curve man in the world. (Anchor Bay)