Aka INFECTION: THE INVASION BEGINS
Directed by Howard Wexler
On the 9th September 2009, a town comes under threat when a meteorite crash lands on Earth and releases worm-like parasites hungry to find human hosts to take over. The town’s bad boy Deke arrives back in town after his release from prison and eager to show the residents he means them no harm, decides to lead the survivors to safety and find a way of destroying the alien parasites.
B-movie Invasion of the Body Snatchers inspired sci-fi horror INFECTION is told from the point of view of Sarah Prescott, now a pensioner and in a mental facility. When a reporter comes to visit her at the institute, Sarah tells her about the events sixty years previously which have been covered up by the government as a modern plague, hiding the facts about the sinister nature of what truly happened. From these opening scenes, the film is thrust into 2009 to show the viewer exactly what happened and how quickly one town descended into chaos.
Part action, part sci-fi horror, the film focuses on the relationships of the group of survivors particularly with the return of Deke who was locked up for murder. His arrival in the town causes upset for his mother, distress for the locals and heartbreak for his ex-girlfriend who really loved him before he threw his life away. Deke’s keen to mend bridges but is he to be trusted?
INFECTION has a lot of heart between its poor CGI effects and dialogue, and fortunately energetic performances from Lochlyn Munro as Sheriff Bowen and Kelly Pendygraft as Sarah Prescott keep the viewer watching. Bryan Brewer fails to command the film despite taking the lead role as Deke Evans and fails to convey emotion or depth in his character making the viewer struggle to feel any emotion for him, good or bad. For a film that relies so heavily on saving the town from the parasitic organisms, a strong charismatic lead is needed and thus the film suffers in the absence of one.
Some questionable methods to fight the alien species are used but not developed that well, particularly when hints are given throughout the movie of there being a messy extraction of the parasite should one be cured of it’s hold. Though the sight of the parasites and the way they spread from one host to another were pretty well performed, the film overall lacks a horror element which is a shame as it could have been a rather sinister film if it wanted to be. Instead, the movie focuses more on the action whilst inserting a few jokes and light-hearted moments to make it an easy-going movie rather than an gripping or terrifying one.
B-movie fans will find odd bits to enjoy here, as I did, but as a whole, the film is lacking charisma and plot depth, particularly in the case of the parasites.