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Sci-fi thriller 'Alien Outpost' plays out like a video game

Sci-fi thriller 'Alien Outpost' plays out like a video game
MO (Joe Reegan) stars in the movie "Alien Outpost" directed by Jabbar Raisani. (Coco Van Oppens / IFC Films)

Looking and feeling like it would have been more at home on Xbox than on a movie theater screen, "Alien Outpost," is a faux documentary that follows a team of soldiers fending off alien invaders.

Set in 2031, the sci-fi thriller follows a pair of photojournalists embedded with an Army unit stationed in the Middle East, where a group of Heavies — humanoid creatures that were left behind on Earth from a previous invasion — have apparently been setting the stage for Round 2.

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Imagine "Predator" with lots of shaky hand-held camera work and you pretty much get the idea.

This first feature by Jabbar Raisani is played out with considerable conviction on the part of its director and the tough-guy cast (led by Rick Ravanello), but the alien element is less convincing because of corny costumes and static-y special effects.

Filmed in South Africa, the film looks as though the bulk of the budget was reserved for ammo. Given the considerable cache of weapons and all that explosive firepower, it wouldn't be difficult to imagine the footage repurposed as a reasonably cool video game.

"Alien Outpost."

No MPAA rating.

Running time: 1 hour, 33 minutes.

Playing: Arena Cinema, Hollywood.

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