Wednesday’s What You Should Watch – Attack the Block
The previews and poor box office showing of “John Carter” are pretty good indications that Hollywood does not understand how to make decent films involving aliens, action, and characters. So when you do find a successful combination of those three (even if it’s from England), it needs to be celebrated. “Attack the Block” is a fun, funny, and well executed film about a group of juvenile gangsters (or wannabe gangsters rather) who join forces with a nurse they’ve recently robbed, to fend off a bunch of aliens attacking their high-rise apartments. And I mean high-rise in not the luxury term, but in the public housing term.
This film has a lot going for it. It’s got a great group of juvenile gangsters, and a charismatic leader in Moses, who provides the perfect tone for the film. The supporting cast is likeable as well, and they’re just fun and vulnerable enough that we really feel for them when they’re being chased and yes, when some of them die, because well, this is an R-rated movie and sometimes kids get killed. Another plus is that the film was produced by the same guys who made “Shaun of the Dead“, which is very similar in nature, only that it deals with zombies instead of predatory aliens.
Some people might blast the special effects, but for CGI creatures, in a movie about kids who would rather lock themselves inside their apartments and play FIFA, they are par for the course. They sort of remind me of the beast from “Brotherhood of the Wolf“, in that they look fake enough, that they almost look good, if that makes any sense. Basically, I didn’t know what I was really expecting and I got what seemed to fit the movie. There is also a big of London slang, which may take some getting used to, but it’s perfectly fitting for the characters and I think it gives the movie a lot of charm.
“Attack the Block” isn’t going to win any Oscars. It’s not the best action movie in years, but it might be the best one involving aliens in a while and the best one made for a budget of $13 million. If the name “Nick Frost” and the combination of that, aliens and child gangsters appeals to you, this is pretty much the best you could ask for. See it before some asshole from Universal decides to remake it.