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The Cinematic Katzenjammer: June 17: Attack the Block


June 17: Attack the Block

"A teen gang in South London defend their block from an alien invasion."

Attack the Block is a very good first film from director Joe Cornish, who takes a rather small budget and makes a much larger than life alien movie. The movie is by no means the greatest looking thing on the face of the earth, but it does employ plenty of clever camera tricks and good, simple effects to create an alien invasion and make it something worth watching. The script is very strong and the acting is great by the young cast and may be one of those films you look back on in ten years and realize the talent that was involved. If you say that Shaun of the Dead re-energizes the zombie-comedy (zombedy) genre, Attack the Block similarly follows with the alien-comedy (aliedy?). 

Produced by the same people as well, actually. 

Attack the Block follows a bunch of teenagers in a gang who come across an alien that literally fell from the sky. After Moses (John Boyega), the leader, is attacked by the monster and kills it with a knife, the gang heads home to their apartment block. After inspecting it further, they have absolutely no idea what the creature is, but think of ways to exploit it for fame and money (going on the news, putting in on eBay, etc.). When more of these aliens begin to fall from the sky and their invasion comes closer to their home, the gang takes the  responsibility of cleaning the streets of these wretched things and thus, saving their neighborhood and families. Each member of the gang has the immaturity and bravery only a teenager might find in himself and it's in the bravado and violence that they exude that makes Attack the Block so fun to watch. Plus, the aliens are freakishly creepy and incredibly gruesome. Yes folks, there is a whole lot of blood. 

If ever domesticated, the Attack the Block aliens would make terrific night lights. 

Attack the Block is a hard movie to review. It clearly suffers from a small budget and has a handful of other shortcomings, but the final product is so fun to watch that you can almost ignore the flaws. I would also like to point out that whenever a young cast makes up the majority of the film, the acting can be rather laughable and hard to watch. However, with Attack the Block, the teenage stars are what make the movie good. The chemistry the gang has is great, and with each fallen comrade (yeah, that shit happens), you begin to see how the group dynamic changes. John Boyega is amazing as Moses and he jumps between being the aggressive leader and the soft-hearted brother very well. He's the standout star of the film and I can only assume he'll be in a lot more going forward. Attack the Block is worth a watch and proves to not only be a hilarious comedy, but a pretty scary horror-gore movie as well. And, the accents are awesome. 

The Good:
the young cast led by a terrific John Boyega
The Bad:
cheap-ish production value that is just the slightest bit distracting
The Ugly:
assuming very few people outside of the U.K will actually see this rather unique movie

Overall: 7.1/10


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