Cert PG Stars 3

Old school aliens, conspiracy theorists and menacing government agents make for throwaway entertainment in this cheesy sci-fi which successfully summons the goofy spirit of 1980’s family adventure such as Flight of the Navigator.

Ryan Masson is badly dressed and convincingly socially inept as Isaac, a likeable yet lowly and nerdy Nasa scientist, obsessing over the future of possible Mars exploration.

While in the countryside recording a video diary, Isaac films a large meteorite crashing nearby, and waking up three days later he’s convinced he’s been the victim of an alien abduction and now possesses psychic powers but is accused of being a fraud by the media.

Isaac finds a sympathetic ear in Sara, a fellow abductee, and Highdee Kuan makes an attractive foil for Masson’s out-of-his-depth geek, but the pair’s search for answers attracts unwanted attention.

They’re soon on the run in a world of mysterious operatives in dark sun-glasses, sleek black cars, white interrogation rooms, laser guns and android henchmen.

The film makes a virtue of these overly familiar elements, plus it’s a joy to see flying saucers in their traditional shape as giant, beautiful, metallic spinning frisbees, and we’re not kept waiting long to meet the aliens, who are in the classic 1950’s mould; tall, thin and angular with large eyes.

Although set in the here and now, the last time I saw anybody using Isaac’s shoulder carried VCR, it was Michael J. Fox in the classic caper, Back To The Future. It’s one of the cute references which demonstrate the film’s love of the movies of the period and along with the synth pop songs on the soundtrack, add to the general 1980’s vibe.

A passion project for writer director Eric Demeusy who’s previously been a special effect guru on TV”s Stranger Things and Game of Thrones, and as he impressively stretches his slim budget and story across an ambitious canvas, he adds sparkle to his lightweight fun.