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Human Rating: 3 / 5 Alien Rating: Crop Circle

You're moving up in the world

When I first read Second Variety, a Philip K. Dick short story he wrote way back in 1952 I thought that it would make a very good movie. There's a lot of excitement and tension in the story that can be presented visually and then there's also that typical Dickian obsession with what is human and what is real and what isn't. Obviously I wasn't the only one who thought so: Dan O'Bannon (who scripted Alien (1979)) also thought so and wrote a screenplay based on the short story. Unfortunately we must have been the only people who thought so because the screenplay spent 15 years in "development hell" and only recently got made by an unknown Canadian outfit as Screamers. So don't be on the lookout for any familiar faces: the only one you might recognise is Peter Weller who played RoboCop (1987) and starred in Naked Lunch...

Is it a good film? Well, the short story is always better but there's a lot going for this film: it remains reasonably faithful to the original short story, the production values are okay and some of the dialogue is pretty effective. On the surface it's little else except a group of people running around and vicious aliens attacking (much like Alien (1979)), but there's some typical Dickian ambiguity about who is human much like in Blade Runner (1982) to make this a cut above average entertainment. To be honest, I thought that this film was better than Independence Day (1996), that other sci-fi flick I recently saw. Whereas Independence Day (1996) is a gleeful repetition of tired cliches, there's a certain intelligence to Screamers. What makes this sad is that while Independence Day (1996) and its brainlessness is raking in the crowds at cinemas, Screamers went straight to the video shelves here in South Africa...

Review by James O'Ehley from The Sci-Fi Movie Page.

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Optimus PrimeTrailer
Peter Weller seems to be in alot of these hokey sci-fi films. LOL Robocop will always be his best fi...
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davecallaway200why didn't screamers
Its cool movie. Its based on a Philip K. D*ck story which I have read, the movie is true to the stor...
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NexusOriginal Movie Poster
No, but it's incredibly similar. It's a very cliched tagline though....
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