Alien Planet (Review)

Director – Alan Maxson (Christmas with Cookie, Patina)
Starring – Alexandra Bokova (Figure it Out, Mermaid Down), Hunter C. Smith (Ike Boys, Naruto: Climbing Silver), and Naiia Lajoie (The Gingerweed Man, Skymed)
Release Date – 2023
Rating – 3/5

As a millennial I grew up during the height of the video store age. I didn’t have a big box store near me but I did have two ma and pop video stores that I would frequent quite often. While I was always open to snagging the newest big budget release that all my friends were going to be talking about in school the next day. However, I couldn’t skip on the direct to video horror and sci-fi titles that lined the shelves in Dewey’s Video.

These moments is what shaped my taste in films and when a movie is sent over for review that reminds me of those films then I have to see them. Several weeks back I was asked to review the sci-fi action film Alien Planet. The trailer sold me on it and I greedily accepted the chance to check it out. I’m glad I did because it was a lot of fun.

**Spoiler Alert** The film follows two lizard like race of humanoids that have been at war with one another with generations. The war has depleted their world’s resources with water almost non-existent. We follow a female who finds herself alone when her husband is killed by one of their rivals forcing her to find the last bit of water that she can while surviving the harsh climate of her planet and those that wish to kill her. **Spoiler Alert**

I went into Alien Planet knowing nothing about it aside from what the trailer showed me. It’s not often I get a practical effects filled sci-fi adventure film and when I do I seriously find myself enthralled with them. Alien Planet didn’t really have the story that pulled me in like I would have liked but the effects, set pieces, location, and acting was enough to hold my attention. While it was far from perfect it was better than most of the other no budget sci-fi films I’ve reviewed in the past.

The acting in this one is solid. I did struggle at times keeping the characters apart due to their similar prosthetics and make-up effects but once the film establishes itself I did find myself impressed by how great the cast was and how they were able to stay in character during what I could only assume were far from perfect filming conditions. I couldn’t imagine filming those action scenes in what looked like a hot and humid location with all that make-up. The cast was truly dedicated to the film and it shows.

The story for this one didn’t really catch my imagination like it could have. In fact, I found myself wishing I was watching the 1985 sci-fi action flick Enemy Mine which followed a similar story where a group of waring humanoids have to work together to survive. I grew up watching Enemy Mine and I loved that this indie sci-fi flick reminded me of that classic sci-fi flick. With that being said, while the practical effects and make-up were a highlight of the film, the story is stretched a bit thin. While I did enjoy what it brought viewers I did find it to be a bit too long and long winded. Some of the run time should have been trimmed from this one to make it flow a little better.

Finally, the film is a showcase of practical effects and how far make-up effects can be pushed even on a budget. We get some blood, a few deaths but the highlight of the film is the lizard-like humanoids that the film follows. They look great and you can still see the actor’s emotions underneath. Overall, Alien Planet is not a ground breaking sci-fi flick but it is absolutely phenomenal considering the budget. I highly recommend it.


(Staff Writer) Lover of all things horror and metal. Also likes boobs and booze.

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