Alien Cargo (1999) ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Better than 75% of the films you’ll find that are made for SyFy

When I start a review stating that this film wasn’t that bad, it’s probably obvious that I was expecting a steaming pile of… Sometime in the future, an interplanetary cargo vessel experiences problems. Waking from hyper sleep two crew members, Chris McNiel (Jason London) and Theta Kaplan (Missy Crider) find out that they have been woken up 10 months later than planned, that they are off course, the ship is damaged, and their colleagues in the previous shift are nowhere to be found. As things develop it turns out that the first shift killed each other and the ship is carrying something nasty, a substance that can elicit hostility and violence. With only nine hours of life support left, and getting angrier by the minute, all hope seems to be gone – that is until a nearby research ship identifies them and offers a pickup. They must find away to survive until then, but they have also got colleague still in hyper sleep that could do with being rescued too. Will anybody be alive when the rescue ship arrives?

Directed by Mark Haber and written by Carla Wagner, this 1999 film is a sci-fi adventure that received a PG rating on it is release. This is a low budget film which relies more on an interesting story and script, than it does on effects and appearance, which at times do look a little cheap. Hardly surprising as this was a made for “SyFy” film. While some people might think this is an “Alien” rip-off I can assure you that it is not. It is fair to say that the film takes some inspiration from other sci-fi films, but it never really does it too brazenly. Despite that I always felt that I had seen it or experienced the film somewhere else before. I could not escape the feeling of Deja-vu throughout and while I cannot directly say I have seen it in a film before, perhaps I have played the scenario out in a video game. That would explain the random pacing of the film too, there were times were everything slowed down so that the audience could catch up, and there were times were things were a little more frantic. Jason London and Missy Crider do good in the lead roles and seem to play off each other well, cheesy in the troughs off their performances, but authentic in their peaks.

All in all, this was better than I expected it to be. After the 90 minutes of runtime I did not feel too robbed – if anything pleasantly surprised. As a PG rated film there is not much worrying in this film that would upset various age demographics. A good story with a few interesting twists and developments.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ (5/10)

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