Ray's Review: Annihilation

posted by HFF Ray -

Annihilation

Rating: A+

Sci-fi fans rejoice Annihilation is here! Wait...tthat didn't come out right. What I mean is the badass sci-fi film starring Natalie Portman and Oscar Isaac is finally here and damn, what a ride it is indeed. Portman plays Lena, a young biology professor whose husband has been missing in action for almost a year and believed to be dead. She is basically a shell of a woman going through the motions of her life when one day out of nowhere her long-lost husband (Oscar Isaac) walks through the door. He is strange and distant but she is happy he is home. Her happiness is short-lived as he and immediately falls ill and starts having a seizure.  On the way to the hospital the ambulance is hijacked by government officials and before she knows what happens next she is drugged and wakes up in a strange government facility.  It is here that she starts to unravel the truth about what happened to her husband. A strange phenomenon called 'The Shimmer' has shown up and engulfed an area around a Lifehouse. The problem is that anything that goes into the shimmer doesn't come out and the shimmer is slowly growing.  She learns her husband was part of a military team to inspect and report back what was inside the shimmer and to date, he is the only person to ever make it out. As her husband's condition worsens she knows the only thing that may save him is to join the next team heading inside and see if she can find answers herself about what is inside the shimmer and find a possible cure to save her husband's life. 

Okay, I got chills just thinking about that description of the film. This movie was just plain bad ass. Seriously, it is so good. There is so much tension and creepiness the filmmakers have used in this film to set the scene just right. From perfect music and atmosphere timing to the things inside the shimmer (I am not gonna tell you what), it feels like a horror film. The thing I liked about the movie is that it plays on your own imagination for the things you don't see and when those things do finally reveal themselves they are just as creepy as you imagined. They really thought outside the box with this film. It is so original and so fun to watch. The cast is top notch and the storytelling is wonderful. Natalie Portman is outstanding in this movie. She is the full spectrum of human emotion from stone cold badass to emotional and falling apart to just almost totally devoid of any feeling depending on where you are in the film. She is great. Jennifer Jason Leigh is also just the right amount of scary all on her own. She plays Dr. Ventress and is the one leading the mission into the Shimmer after years spent sending people into it. She has her own reasons for going it always keeps you wondering what her motives are.  The rest of the team of women who are on this mission balance out the rest of the story perfectly. There is definitely someone everyone can relate to from the hopeful type to the "Why did I sign up for this" type and trust me it is entertaining to watch. 

This film is packed with jump scares and tense moments. It will have you spending several minutes in the theater wondering what the hell is happening as this story is a heavy one and though it may leave you with a few questions by the time the credits roll, you will still leave feeling pretty satisfied with what you just saw. It is just plain cool. We scored Annihilation with a solid A+. it is a great film and one that I highly recommend you check out. It is definitely something fresh and new and fun and I hope you guys like it as much as I did. 

Annihilation hits theaters everywhere February 23.

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