Horror director Richard Stanley returns to the director’s chair after an over twenty-year absence with ‘Color Out of Space,’ a film from SpectreVision and RLJE Films, based on the short story “The Colour Out of Space” by H. P. Lovecraft. According to Stanley, this is meant to be the first in a trilogy of Lovecraft adaptations.
After his wife Theresa (Joely Richardson) has a mastectomy, Nathan Gardner (Nicolas Cage) moves her, his son Benny (Brendan Meyer), daughter Lavinia (Madeleine Arthur), and younger son Jack (Julian Hilliard) to his family farm located outside the rural town Arkham to raise alpacas. Each person is strained by the move, but things get worse when a meteorite strikes their front yard, igniting a bizarre purple light. A hydrologist Ward (Elliot Knight) arrives to test the water and visits local hippie Ezra (Tommy Chong) who warns that something strange is going on.
Soon, the family begins to act weird. Nathan slowly becomes tense and angry. His wife becomes disjointed and frustrated. Lavinia dives deeper into witchcraft. Benny is losing time, claiming he felt only ten minutes go by when it was hours. Jack begins to talk to the “person in the well” where a strange whistle is being heard.
I am not a connoisseur of horror nor am I an expert of the genre, so my taste is mixed when it comes to scary films and, while I won’t say I enjoyed it, the movie definitely kept my interest. It had me from end-to-end and definitely had my attention from beginning to end. Stanley definitely knows horror and it shows.
As for the acting, it was Cage at his finest. He ramps up his craziness to the next level and you were stunned by how this loving father slowly transforms into a rageaholic and starts yelling in a frightening manner at his kids, when before he tried to more diplomatic when speaking to them. It was also good to see Richards back on screen. She is an excellent actress and I enjoyed seeing her return as a mother who slowly becomes despondent from her family. I also want to shoutout Knight. He was excellent as the observer who is trying to fix the situation and shined in the role.
The other actors were good as well. The teen and child actors did a good job showing their reactions as the tension rises from the alien light. I felt they played the roles very well and made the film excellent. I was not a fan of Lavinian’s character getting into witchcraft. It felt forced and her other traits were enough for a well-rounded character.
While the movie is billed as horror, and indeed had plenty of graphic bloody scenes and disturbing images, it felt unsettling and weird than horrific. Watching the family apart and have experiences from the weird, purple light, you grew uncomfortable, but I never felt horrified while watching the scenes.
Bottom line, Color Out Of Space is an unsettling, tense movie that has plenty of jump-scares to keep you bizarrely interested in the plot. If you are a Nicolas Cage fan, this is one to add to the collection.
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Strong bloody violence, Disturbing images, Gore
FAVORITE QUOTE: Nothing. Nothing. Cold and wet. But it burns. Sucking the life out of everything. It came down in the rock. It lives in the well. It grew down there. Poisoning everything. Changing everything. Into something like the world it came from. Into what it knows. We all know it’s coming, but we can’t getaway. It’s got everything that lives. They all drunk the water. It got strong. Fed itself on them. It came from the stars… where things ain’t like they are here. It’s just a color. But it burns.
Check out the trailer below:
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