What’s Up with That Familiar ‘Face’ in Alex Garland’s Annihilation?

It might not feature Oscar Isaac dancing …

but Alex Garland’s follow up to Ex Machina does find the actor in a state of undress, kissing and tickling his onscreen wife  — played by Natalie Portman — so all is not lost.

Based on the novel by Jeff VanderMeer, Annihilation finds biologist Lena trying to discover what happened to her husband after he went on an expedition into an unpredictable, uninhabitable area where the laws of nature go a little … bonkers. With Garland writing (screenplay) and helming, Portman in the lead, and a cast that includes Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tessa Thompson, Gina Rodriguez and Benedict Wong, this is a no-brainer — a must see — but there is one thing that troubles me just a little. Watch the trailer first, then we’ll get to it.

Intriguing, right? So, there seems to be some type of alien creature that’s possibly using humans (DNA?) to recreate itself or make some new, indestructible species, and the area it inhabits looks like an impressionist version of reality called ‘The Shimmer.’ If you were paying attention, you probably noticed that there’s something a little familiar about a particular moment — one where we actually get to see one of the creatures:

Yeah, that bothers me a little. There’s homage, and then there’s something more akin to copying, and I’m thinking somewhere down the line, Sir Ridley might have a little something to say about that shot, which is clearly modeled after this iconic moment …

But, hey, at least the alien’s *nose* is different!

Regardless, there’s nothing that’ll keep me from watching this movie and, since Scott has basically said he’s abandoning the “alien” part of his Alien franchise, perhaps he’s okay with having Garland take up the mantle. After all, it’s not like Ridley has a problem with other people taking over where he left off, right?

Annihilation hits theaters February 13th, and Netflix will pick it up for streaming 17 days later.


Cindy Davis

Cindy Davis has been writing about the entertainment industry for ​over ten years, and is the ​Editor-in-Chief at Oohlo, where she muses over television, movies, and pop culture. Previous Senior News Editor at Pajiba, and published at BUST.

You may also like...