we’re alive! we did it…

Stranded So to take a break from my recent bout of “low-budget sci-fi film” love, I must say something about Stranded. After a quiet 2001ish start (though blatantly low budget), the first manned ship to visit Mars ends up crashing there! And since their orbiter doesn’t have a second lander, it may as well just turn tail and head back to Earth. Everyone seems really bummed by all of that except for one guy who is just excited to have made it… Which would be my take on the situation if I got to go on the first manned mission to another world!

Trying to piece things together, and realizing that their supplies won’t last even near long enough to make the 2+ years it would take for a rescue attempt to arrive, three of them head out to investigate a strange radar image a few hours walk away. Which is unfortunate, as the scenes of the surface of Mars are probably the low point of this movie, with hardly any attempt made to make it appear that they might be on an different world. But wait! That’s not the only bad part. They talk as they wander about and, while I thought the script was okay at first, just marred by bad readings, as the movie wore on I lost faith in the script also… Though it still wasn’t as bad as the readings. Maria Lidon (also the director?) and Danal Aser deliver every one of their respective lines terribly, without the slightest level of convincingness. That coupled with how cheaply this movie seems to have been made, causes me to wonder about the rest of the cast. What are: Vincent Gallo, Maria de Medeiros and Joaquim de Almeifa doing here? Three actors who, while maybe not great, are certainly of a higher caliber and reputation than the rest. I can’t imagine why they are in this unless it was as a favor for a friend or something.

Lidon also delivers some narration that, while unnecessary as narration usually is, is also painfully delivered. All in all, Stranded is generally boring, badly acted, with terrible effects and “sets” and a story that might have had some potential, but it ends up being not all that. The movie does finally start to try to get interesting and pick up steam about an hour in, but at that point, I didn’t really care.


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