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Non-Review Review: Annihilation

Annihilation is a science-fiction smorgasbord.

Early in the film, a group of scientists determine that the are of land which they have been sent to investigate has taken strange properties. Local plants and animals seem to have mutated and warped under the influence of some strange beings. Impossible hybrids stalk the landscape, exotic combinations of recognisable forms in order to create something uncanny and unsettling. In its own way, Annihilation feels self-aware.

The mouth of madness.

Alex Garland’s latest film is very much a hybrid itself, a synthesis of iconic science fiction elements, fused together to create something novel and exciting. Audience members will recognise a strand of DNA here, a stronger marker there. Even its harshest critic must concede that Annihilation has a broad palette; a dash of Stalker, a shade of Alien, a hint of Arrival, the slightest trace of Solaris, a nod towards The Thing, some 2001: A Space Odyssey for flavour. All these elements thrown together and mixed to create something eccentric and something intriguing.

Annihilation is a brainy high-energy imaginative science-fiction mixtape, and one both enticed and horrified by the idea that this is essentially the future culture.

“He was always throwing himself into his work.”

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9. Stalker (#203)

Why did you take my watch?

Hosted by Andrew Quinn and Darren Mooney, The 250 is a fortnightly trip through some of the best (and worst) movies ever made, as voted for by Internet Movie Database Users. New episodes are released every second Saturday at 6pm GMT, with the occasional bonus episode between them.

This time, Andrei Tarkovsky’s Stalker.

There is a zone. At the centre of the zone, there is a room. An author and a professor wander through the mysterious quarantined zone, guided by a veteran known as a “stalker.”

At time of recording, it was ranked the 203rd best movie of all time on the Internet Movie Database.


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Stalker is Still Playing at Dundrum!

Mark O’Connor got in touch and just asked me to mention that his Irish film Stalker is still playing at Dundrum, and will be playing until Thursday. So, if anybody wants to see it, now is the chance.


Stalker Premiere, Dundrum 26th February 2014

I’m always glad to support Irish film here, so I thought I’d pass on the details of the premiere of Mark O’Connor’s new film, Stalker. The director’s third feature film, with a cast including John Connors (King of The Travellers), Barry Keoghan (Between the Canals, Stay) and Peter Coonan (Love/Hate), the movie is premiering this Wednesday, February 26th at 7pm in Movies @ Dundrum. Tickets are reportedly selling fast, but are available on-line here.

There will be a Q and A with cast after the film. Stalker came second in Galway Film Festival and won the Underground Film Festival 2013. The trailer is below.