Films about invaders from space have been a staple of film and television since the golden age of cinema. Playing on many Cold War fears in the aftermath of W.W.II, aliens bent on destruction has been an enduring staple of cinematic culture.
In the new film “The 5th Wave” which is based on the book of the same name, Chloe Grace Moretz plays Cassie, a teen who has her entire life turned upside down by the arrival of a mysterious craft. A few days after the arrival of “the Others” as they are known, a pulse wipes out all electronics on the planet. This is soon followed by tsunamis and earthquakes as well as disease and death.
Cassie along with her father and brother find shelter but their community is soon disrupted by the arrival of the military who say that the invaders are now amongst them and posing as humans.
The military under the leadership of Colonel Vosch (Liev Schreiber) has a plan to train the children to spot and defeat the alien invaders thus setting in motion the main conflict of the film. The secondary story consists of Cassie attempting to reunite with her family and her relationship with a mysterious stranger named Evan (Alex Roe).
The film is clearly aimed at a young adult market and as such I was able to spot the big twist in the film a long ways off as the clues were blatantly obvious to me. That being said, the film is better than you might expect and being the first chapter in a trilogy of books does set up the possibilities of sequels.
The dialogue and acting is pretty groan inducing at times, but again, remember the target audience, the film should entertain and it is nice to see Moretz deliver a solid performance in what in many ways could have been a limited role.
While it is not going to make you forget “The Hunger Games” anytime soon, the film is still a decent escape for those willing to overlook the flaws.
3 stars out of 5.