Overlooked Awesomeness!-Australiens (2014)

Every true film lover absolutely adores the opportunity to see great films which will make them think, challenge them, and even potentially change their entire outlook on life. Film is art after all and just like any art form is should be used to its fullest potential to create works that can shock, enlighten, and intrigue whatever audience is drawn to them. Every once in a while though, you do have to appreciate a movie that you can just sit back and have a good time with, strapping yourself in for a mindlessly fun experience that doesn’t take itself seriously. This is why I am a fan of good old-fashioned dumb fun B movies! Don’t get me wrong, there are days when I want to watch films like A Clockwork Orange or Oldboy, films that are so challenging and deep that I’ll be thinking about them for days. Other days though, I want to watch a movie where a bunch of geeky Australian indie rockers run afoul of an alien invasion and are the only ones who can stop it! Why did I want to watch that? After hearing the good men from the horror review YouTube channel, Bloodbath and Beyond, absolutely gush about how funny, insane, and completely tongue-in-cheek it was, I definitely knew I had to seek it out as soon as I possibly could! Now, thanks to iTunes having it up for rental, I can say with absolute certainty that I do not regret the purchase as this turned out to be one of the funniest indie sci-fi/horror comedies I’ve seen in a long time, and I could not wait to talk about it here!

            Andi Gibson is an Australian punk rocker that nobody has ever heard of, and her crazy belief that little green men from outer space visited her as a kid and gave her “otherworldly cognitive powers” does not do well for her reputation. Her family thinks she’s nuts, none of her albums sell at gigs, and it seems as if things will just continue to get worse for her despite her constant misguided optimism. Everything changes for her and the entire country of Australia though when an unknown alien force unleashes an apocalyptic wave of attacks on their home, and kidnaps Andi’s mother in the process. Thinking that the extraterrestrial hooligans are trying to get to Andi through her mother, no doubt because of her “dangerous cognitive powers,” she teams up with a ragtag group of her highly moronic friends and family. From her hypochondriac brother Elliot, her cousin Keith who’s muscles are bigger than his brains, her camerawoman friend Cam (seriously), and her father who may have some secrets of his own, our gang of incompetent fools take on Kung-Fu kicking aliens, giant robots, and laser-firing UFOs to save Andi’s mom and uncover the truth behind this irreverent and hilarious ride through a night none of them will ever forget!

            Obviously, this is not a movie that has any intention of being taken seriously and it is clear from the opening scene that this movie has its tongue planted firmly within its cheek. A lot of critics will most likely look at a film like this and write them off as pure drivel, but really, if you’re the kind of person that rolls your eyes at titles like Sharknado or Killer Klowns from Outer Space then why would you actively seek it out just to complain about the quality? What we have here is an indie horror comedy release that knows exactly what it is and delivers all the absurdity you’d expect to see just looking at the title! The jokes are funny, the cast is completely on point, hardly any of the humor misses, and on top of all that, it is visually stunning despite being made on such a limited budget! It is colorful, it is bright, it is bouncy, and every character stands out with brilliant costume design and quirks which make room for no shortage of clever jokes! While the effects on stuff like the aliens and spaceships are obviously done with CGI the filmmakers somehow found a way to make them all seem like tangible characters which integrate almost flawlessly with the environment. Obviously some of the effects look phonier than others but I applaud any indie film which manages to have more convincing aliens than a multi-million dollar train wreck like Independence Day: Resurgence! In a Hollywood system where so many mediocre comedies are released every summer it is so refreshing to see a crew deliver something that is balls-to-the-wall hilarious and deliver hit after hit with each subsequent scene!

            If I had to pick one thing I didn’t like about this film it would probably have to be the ending. Not that it isn’t funny or horrible in any way, but it does test your patience with borderline Shyamalan-style reveals that are explained in wave after wave of expositional speeches that go on for a significant amount of time. They’re not insulting and don’t kill the experience of the movie in any way, but it does give you a reminder of the multiple endings at the end of Peter Jackson’s Return of the King and it just feels like filler more than anything else. In regards to everything else though, I have little to complain about and the part of me which adores irreverent horror/sci-fi comedies had an absolute blast! If any of that sounds like a good time to you, and you know who you are, then give this one a shot and blast off for a close encounter you won’t regret!

You can also purchase the DVD here: https://www.amazon.com/Australiens-Rita-Artmann/dp/B01D3RPL0U/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1470092929&sr=8-2&keywords=australiens

Final Score: 10/10

Next Review: Lights Out


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