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37 of 47 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good B movie
This is always going to be a bit of a Marmite film, it nearly has the looks of a big blockbuster but not quite... and it nearly has a good Sci fi storyline, but not quite. It is important to remember how small the budget for this film was compared to the big blockbusters like Independence day, I think they have done well for the money spent....but I suppose we have to pay...
Published on 7 Dec. 2010 by G. Southwell

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars decent effects let down by a dismal script
I caught this on tv, and thought that surely it could not be as bad as the rather lacklustre reviews suggested.

It starts off reasonably well, with some half familiar faces from American tv series crashing in a high end high rise being woken by a strange light. Then it jumps back to supply far more tedious back story than anyone ever wanted. The action...
Published 7 months ago by tallmanbaby


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars decent effects let down by a dismal script, 6 Dec. 2014
By 
tallmanbaby (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
I caught this on tv, and thought that surely it could not be as bad as the rather lacklustre reviews suggested.

It starts off reasonably well, with some half familiar faces from American tv series crashing in a high end high rise being woken by a strange light. Then it jumps back to supply far more tedious back story than anyone ever wanted. The action eventually gets back to where we started at, and we find the protagonists holed up in their flat and starting to bicker.

In fairness there is a fair bit of action, and it is decently shot, with some exciting moments. The real problem is that the doom laden story and un-engaging characters are a complete drag. I have never been more indifferent to the fate of mankind than with this film.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Skylack, 24 Feb. 2014
By 
EA Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
I have the feeling that the Brothers Strause wanted to create an alien invasion movie that was more realistic, focusing on "ordinary" people.

And that isn't a bad idea. But clearly it takes a lot more talent than those brothers have, because "Skyline" is a frustrating mass of "could have beens" and "if onlys." The actors do good jobs and the special effects are absolutely spectacular, but most of the movie is just a bunch of people hanging around an apartment building, bickering with each other.

Jarrod (Eric Balfour) and his girlfriend Elaine (Scottie Thompson) are visiting his best friend Terry (Donald Faison) in Los Angeles, where they party in Terry's skyscraper apartment building. But the fun is interrupted when Terry offers Jarrod a job that would require moving to L.A., which Elaine is not happy about because she has just found out that she is pregnant.

Then giant blue lights fall from the sky -- followed by alien ships that can mesmerize and abduct people. Along with the building manager Oliver (David Zayas), the little group hides in Terry's apartment, and occasionally makes a doomed effort to escape the building. That... pretty much takes up the entire plot except for the last fifteen minutes.

"Skyline" might have been a great story if it had only been forty minutes, maximum. Instead we get a "middle section" that is so dull that you might end up tearing out your OWN brain -- people bicker, cower in fear, bicker again, try to escape, fail to escape, scuttle back into the apartment, et cetera. Eventually you just want the characters to do ANYTHING other than scuttle around the apartment building like beetles.

And yes, it is painfully boring. Even worse, we are given glimpses of much more interesting events here and there, before switching the action back to people hiding in an apartment. Hello, fighter jets! Why are we not following your pilots instead of the people who are gawping open-mouthed at the window? Things do become more dramatic and action-packed in the last fifteen minutes... only to serve up a non-ending that leaves the whole story hanging.

One thing I will say is that the special effects are glorious -- the ships are giant biomechanical monstrosities like flying squids. Too bad the aliens' reason for coming to Earth makes NO sense, and is never explored.

However the actors aren't to blame. Balfour and Thompson give excellent performances as a pair who are truly in love, and Zayas is pretty fun as a hard-nosed guy whose take-no-prisoners attitude applies to everyone. However, few of the actors are ever given much to do, and most of the characters aren't really fleshed out much.

"Skyline" has a lot of promise, but it's wasted with dull, repetitive storytelling and a frustrating non-ending. Even the glorious special effects can't save this.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great Visuals, Story Lets Down, 8 Jun. 2011
By 
GratuitousViolets "Ash" (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
My Thoughts: This movie had alot of potential to be something extraordinary. The trailer brought promise of a movie that was going to take you into something exciting and promising. Instead, the filmmakers took what had already been done, put some better graphics in and continued in the same directions many movies had already gone. This story is absolutely a hybrid between Independence Day and Cloverfield (more of the latter).

I can't deny the graphics were beautiful, but the story lacked substance and I found it hard to care for any of the characters at all. Eric Balfour I'm sorry to say was a very poor leading man and I couldn't feel any emotion or yearn for survival coming from the character at all (which is meant to be the point). Donald Faison was not bad here, but there wasn't enough of him in the story (he should have been the lead) and Brittany Daniel here was completely miscast - she should stick to comedy where she shines.

All in all, I'd avoid this if you've seen Cloverfield, because it's almost the same story without the shaky camera work.

The Story: After a party, five friends awaken in the morning to find that L.A. is under attack. Strange lights are coming from the sky that are enchanting people who look towards it, causing them to vanish. Soon it becomes a fight for survival as they learn that humanity is being snuffed out by the terrifying beings that have come from the ships above.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars predictable but good sci-fi movie, 21 May 2012
This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
Well theres been a lot of negative reviews on this film,it put me off a little but still bought it,as I generally like these films and i did enjoy it.Think cloverfield,if you liked that you,ll enjoy this.It starts off with a bunch of people rising after a party in a tower block,being dazzled or frazzled if you like if you get caught in the beam .They have to work thier way out of the building avoiding the alien beams at all cost ,and try and make it to some safe haven.it moves along at a good pace with plenty of action scene,s along the way.exellent special effects too,in all a good watch if a bit predictable,still despite other reviews glad I bought it.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Special-Effects Just About Make Up for a Lack of Originality, 21 Oct. 2011
By 
Mr. Laurence Williams "laurence_p_williams" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
If you have seen films such as 'Independence Day', 'Cloverfield' or the Spielberg version of 'War of the Worlds' then watching this film 'Skyline' will not offer too many surprises, since it bears many similarities to what occurs in those other movies and it would appear to imitate the overall plots in them as well as specific action scenes/ideas; however, that does not mean it is not an entertaining watch.

If you haven't got the gist already, 'Skyline' involves the aggressive invasion of earth (or at least Los Angeles, USA !) by a massive force of alien spaceships, with the resultant resistance by humans and their military. So, you can see the similarity in plot and once you watch it you will notice similar content in many of the scenes.

However, the refreshing thing in 'Skyline' is the setting remains firmly fixed in and around a high-rise Los Angeles 'condominium' with ventures further afield only being to the horizon, rather than moving around the USA or the world; this is probably the reason for the film title..... In addition, there is virtually no explanation for the alien events that occur; we learn the limited detail of the story at the same time as the small group of people covered in the film do, with none of the usual reliance on explanation from experts or focussing on news reports via the TV/radio. The ending is also enigmatic....

This all makes the action really quite clinical and ruthless, especially as although there is an attempt to give a bit of back-story to the main characters which might suggest an attempt to make us empathise with them, it is of little consequence. Ultimately, I didn't find myself caring one iota for their demise (a bit like the yuppie victims in 'Cloverfield') and just enjoying the 'apocalyptic ride' - I assume this was intentional, if not I don't feel guilty anyway !

What really makes the film stand-out though are the special-effects, they are excellent, extremely convincing and better than what you appears in any of the 3 films I mentioned earlier and ensure that it is more a 'B+' movie, rather than a true 'B-movie' ! Whilst I didn't watch 'Skyline' on commercial disc, but via an HD satellite transmission, I would imagine the viewing experience would be just as good if not better on Blu-ray; the lower definition from DVD might run the risk that any chance of enjoyment is lost ! I understand that the budget for the film was relatively small and most of it was spent on the special-effects; from everything I've written up to now I think you will agree that is probably right !

'Skyline' does not set any new standards for plot or originality, but for a lazy night in where you just plonk your brain in neutral and watch it fits the bill perfectly. I can imagine that it would have been as well received by the vocal and energetic audience I shared a viewing of the woeful 'Judge Dredd' some years ago when in Florida - this film would be right up their street. Obviously, I do not think this film would stand up to repeat viewing either - as there is little more to be gained since you get the whole 'Skyline' experience the first time.

So, a view once-only in a darkened room and relaxing chair (with lots of popcorn perhaps) is what 'Skyline' deserves. It is utterly forgettable, but at least impressive for the relatively short running-time due to the marvellous special-effects: rent, don't buy !
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2.0 out of 5 stars A T.V cast for a T.V movie, 12 Oct. 2011
By 
Jules (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
The film follows Jarrod (Eric Balfour- Haven) & Elaine (Scottie Thompson -NCIS) as a young couple visiting Jarrods old friend Terry (Donald Faison-Scrubs) his wife/girlfriend Candice (Brittany Daniel -The Game) & his Assistant Denise (Crystal Reed -Teen Wolf t.v series). Terry has had some success it seems, as he whisks them from the Los Angeles airport in a limo, to his skyline private penthouse suite. However, it's not long until things start going awry.

After a party the night before, the group are awakened at dawn by mysterious beams of blue light that land all over LA, and one of the party goers Ray (Neil Hopkins- Lost staying the night is one of the first attracted to the light. His skin & eyes start turning weird as hypnotized by the light, a few seconds later as witnessed by Densie, he simply disappears into it. That's right, Aliens are attacking Earth! Can the group survive through this nightmare ?!

In summary, this film is set all the time in the Penthouse suite & small surrounding area, relying heavily on CGI which is done well enough to be fair, just not the greatest story that smashes the genre open or amazing acting talent (they are fine t.v actors) on show backing it up to make us care. I never felt any sympathy or understanding with the characters as they didn't even seem bothered to question why these creatures were doing this, and i felt disappointed at the finish. Which incidentally went out with a possibility of there being a sequel, which was interesting, but lets pray that doesn't happen ;-). IMO your are better off watching something like Battle: Los Angeles or Independence Day if you want to watch an arguably better Alien invasion flick.

In conclusion, Skyline is very much a selection of T.V actors thrown together in a hope they work together on screen, backed up with some decent CGI effects, but it backfires & turns into a T.V Movie. Contains mild language & violence. Disappointing.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A honest variation on "War of the worlds" theme - but with an über idiotic ending!, 16 Dec 2010, 16 Dec. 2010
By 
Maciej "Darth Maciek" (Darth Maciek is out there...) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
"Skyline" is very clearly an interpretation of the classical "War of the worlds" novel by H.G. Wells and although it is not nearly as good as the great "War of the worlds" from 1953, it is definitely better than "Independence Day" and more or less as good as Spielberg's "War of the worlds" from 2005. You must however be warned, that the three last minutes are so incredibly stupid, that for some people they will probably spoil the whole movie. My advice is to simply disregard the ending and enjoy the first 90 minutes.

As it is clear from the first seconds of the movie, this is a story about an alien invasion as seen by a group of people in Los Angeles. Immediately in the first minutes it becomes evident that this is a very VERY serious matter. Aliens in this movie clearly did invade some other worlds before, and when doing that they learned the hard way that there is no free lunch and for that reason when targeting Earth they came loaded for bear. The way they proceed has nothing to do with the ridiculous invasion in "Independence Day" - those guys mean business! Their skill and aggressiveness are a very strong point of this movie.

Another good point is that aliens in "Skyline" are not invulnerable and indestructible - a laser guided 2000 lbs bomb, a "Hellfire" anti tank missile, an AT-4 shoulder launched 84 mm antitank rocket and even a 0.50 caliber anti-armor bullet shot by a human sniper, they all do damage when they touch (and when the nukes get involved, they do a LOT of damage). But those aliens are also VERY GOOD at survivability, damage control and quick repairs. They obviously heavily invested in bio-cybernetics and ended by hitting the pay dirt. The result on the screen is very pleasant and I am certain that any SF enthusiast will appreciate it.

The design of alien ships and war machines is EXCELLENT! They all look REALLY alien - do not expect any kind of flying saucers or anything even remotely similar to present day human war machines. If anything, alien machinery looks rather like inspired by H.P. Lovecraft books, or H.R. Giger surrealistic paintings (yes, you are right, he is the guy who designed the creature from "Alien"). And we are finally left very much in doubt how exactly the REAL invaders look - until the very end I couldn't make my mind as to who exactly are the real crews of the spaceships and who are the bio-robots send to fight the war and harvest the resources... that is another strong point of the movie.

As the previous reviewer already noticed there is a little similarity with "Cloverfield" - this movie also shows a group of (very) ordinary people faced suddenly by a cataclysmic life threatening event. The camera perspective of "Cloverfield" was not however used in "Skyline" and I think it is a good thing because in this way we can see more of the invasion and human counteroffensive - and believe me, it is worth watching. It is also a good thing that the cast did not include any major stars, because in this way we absolutely do not know who will make it until the end credits...

The characters however are not very interesting - this is probably the second less satisfying thing in this movie. There is only seven people in the group we follow in "Skyline", with half a dozen of other people making shorter but significant appearances. Terry (Donald Faison) is a successful musician, who lives with his mistress Candice (Brittany Daniel). The night when everything begins, there are also some guests in his appartment: his assistant Denise (Crystal Reed), his collaborator Ray (Neil Hopkins), his best friend Jarrod (Eric Balfour) and Jarrod's girlfriend Elaine (played by Scottie Thompson, who is a VERY attractive young actress). A little later they are joined by the building manager Oliver (David Zayas). With the exception of Elaine, I really couldn't find ANYBODY I could care for - and for some characters I actually secretely hoped they would not make it...

There is one scene in this movie that I count as one of the GREATEST war scenes I ever saw - it includes a swarm of unmanned combat air vehicles (UCAVs), mostly Predators armed with Hellfire missiles but also three Boeing Phantom Ray drones armed with nukes. In the real world those last UCAVs are not yet in service, but they should start flying in 2011. (UPDATE: the Phantom Ray prototype flew for the first time in April 2011). That is an extraordinary battle scene! Another air battle, later in the movie, when the real planes, mostly F-22 Raptors, enter the fight, is quite interesting too.

To conclude, I think that notwithstanding the pale characters, I would be tempted to give four stars to this movie - but the last three minutes are a DEADLY SIN sin which can not be forgiven! For that reason I give it only three stars and I really hope that whoever thought the ending of "Skyline" will spend years in the place in purgatory reserved to the greatest über morons from our little planet...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars At least they tried, 27 April 2012
This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
This deserved a bigger budget, as there is the germ of a good idea and a good film here.

The final result is actually pretty weak, for it is has weaknesses in almost every film-making aspect.

However, in offering a few semi-original ideas on its obviously tiny budget, it deserves a bit of respect, and is way better than the truly dreadful contemporay movie Battle: Los Angeles.

The traditional small group theme works quite well, and yeah, it ain't brilliant, but it ain't so bad either.

Give it a chance, anyway. It deserves that.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Promised so much. Delivered so little., 5 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
After seeing a few trailers for this it looked so great. But this is a classic mislead from the trailers. The trailer shows you the great special effects. It just gives you enough of a glimpse for you to want more. That though is all you get.

Once viewing the film you quickly find out just how shallow the story is and how bad the characters depth is. Then there is the fact the story line is so short you start to wonder how they managed to make a film with it by the end. If this is supposed to be a trilogy. Then god hopes the other two films have a lot more story in them and more depths. Then though after seeing this film who is going to both watching a second. As this is only worth watching for the special effects.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Waste of Time!, 6 April 2011
This review is from: Skyline [DVD] (DVD)
I read the reviews about this film,some negative and some positive - i'm just thankful i didnt buy it - this is how i sum this film up.....a mix up between district 9, cloverfield, independence day and war of the worlds. Not a very good mix up either some very annoying people and a bad script. Thats about it...oh and the ending...didn't make sense either
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Skyline [DVD]
Skyline [DVD] by Colin Strause (DVD - 2011)
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