Annihilation (film and book spoilers hidden)

Just got done watching it. I know there’s been a few comments already in the movies thread but given it’s readily available on Netflix and that it’s based on a relatively popular book series I thought it could do with it’s own thread. Really annoying to have not seen it in the cinema and I don’t have that big of a TV so really leaned in at some moments. I also have Netflix but really unreliable internet so I ended up torrenting it to be safe.

As a big fan of the books and Alex Garland I really enjoyed it, despite being surprised at just how much they changed. The tension throughout was excellent, and the cast performed well, Jennifer Jason Leigh stood out for me in particular but I rated Portman too. Some really great production design, the sets and the creatures were astounding. I didn’t take any issue with the CGI and in some moments I thought it was used to particularly beautiful effect.

Thought the body horror stuff was really well done. Particularly the soldier exploded against the wall of the pool, Tessa becoming a plant and the manbearpig with the woman’s scream.

One part that I disagree with from the positive reviews was the score. Didn’t think the guitar score suited the film at all and it only really worked when it went fully electronic towards the end.

Spoilers for Annihilation the book:

I was really surprised at how much they changed from the novel. No topographical anomaly, no lighthouse keeper, crawler is an alien thing, characters have names, Biologist was a soldier with a completely different personality, husband’s clone stays alive, Area X moving rapidly over 3 years not 30. I think they were smart decisions for the film. Only the change in the biologist’s personality bothered me.

Spoiler for book 3:

Odd that the only thing from the second two books is the revelation from Acceptance that the psychologist had cancer. Also how explicit they are about it being from space

Spoiler alert!

the new Arrival

Agree re the guitar parts. The other music was so much better. Should have used more of it. The last like half an hour was all super good.


Yeah those guitar bits (especially the twangy ones) sounded like all the zombie things ever, so I don’t really know what they were intending with that.

Only just got round to watching this but my word, I absolutely loved every second of it. I can’t think of a film I’ve had more of an immediate, visceral reaction to in years. Stunningly beautiful and hallucinogenic (very, very similar to some hallucinations I’ve had myself in fact haha), it’s a genuine travesty it didn’t end up in the cinemas in Europe. The last half hour was particularly good, but I thought there was so much in there throughout, from ecological issues to the whole trans/post-humanism thing, and it’s a shame that all the reviews I’ve seen have just gone “oh it’s sci-fi fluff/clever” without going into any detail about what it’s actually saying, or “oh it’s just about a woman’s individual disintegration”, whereas it seemed to be pretty much the exact opposite to me… Massive, massive step up from Ex Machina too, great performances all round, absolutely smashed it. Apart from the guitar twanging, but the synths at the end are great (Geoff Barrow wuhuu!).

I’m liking more and more how I can be watching something and going… this sounds like a Geoff barrow score :smiley:

Decent film.

Thought it was OK. Most of the ideas appeared to have been pinched from Stalker.

I honestly don’t remember the score at all, so couldn’t of been that good.

Thought it was pretty solid, but bit draggy in places. The last 20-25 minutes were interesting.

Weird to see Padme and Poe getting it on - don’t cross the saga streams!

A lot of the horror elements made me think of Swamp Thing in a good way.

The bit at the end was ripped off a level from an old (the original) Tomb Raider game.

Thought The Portman was good in it.

Well I enjoyed watching Jane Foster and Valkerie working together.