Somehow the most unbelievable thing about this movie that involves a rapidly growing alien life form found in the dirt on Mars attacking a bunch of astronauts is the fact that NASA held a contest that let a bunch of elementary school kids name the alien.
Life is about a group of astronauts, most notably played by Jake Gyllenhaal, Ryan Reynolds, and Rebecca Ferguson, who find a dead alien life form in soil samples from Mars. Because humans are stupid, they decided to try and bring it back to life. Obviously this doesn’t go well and we have our movie… which is basically Alien.
Despite virtually being a remake of Alien, I really enjoyed Life. It does a good job of building and sustaining suspense. That kept me interested and entertained throughout. The actors all have good chemistry and Reynolds and Gyllenhaal are always fun to watch. The alien is cool and terrifying looking when it is fully grown. I likes the idea the movie tried to use that the alien was really just trying to survive no matter what it did. It’s a simple movie that is short and to the point. There is no wasted time in the hour and 45 minute runtime.
But perhaps because of that, Life doesn’t bring anything fresh to the genre. It’s just your average monster movie in space when it comes down to it. For the most part the characters are underdeveloped making their eventual deaths-by-alien relatively meaningless. The ending is predictable, but I liked it. However, it does make a sequel necessary to make it really work.
Life isn’t going to win any awards and probably isn’t ever going to be seen as a classic like Alien is. But it’s an entertaining time at the movie and worth a watch for anyone who likes horror/suspense movies. I enjoyed it a lot for what it was and I’ll give Life a 4/5.