DATELINE: Sequel 25 Years Later (Again)
Twenty-odd years after the second Invasion of the Body Snatchers, a sequel to a sequel shows up. This one is The Invasion and features Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig (young and James Bondy but strictly a bauble here, highly decorative).
We enjoy the notion that every generation presents its own paranoid outburst: invaders from space take over human bodies by replication. Whether another sequel will appear in twenty-five years is doubtful, or at least we won’t know about it.
As in the 1979 film, Kevin McCarthy of the first, original film made an appearance to tie it to the previous. This time, Veronica Cartwright makes an appearance to claim the man she is married to is not her husband (a common complaint in these films).
We love that connection. Here, however, the paranoia is less threatening. The looks from by-passers is not quite as disturbing and malevolence is not around every corner.
Make no mistake, though: The Invasion is cut from the same outer space spore. Alas, this one seems to have a ‘happy’ ending. Paranoia is dispatched.
The horror builds slowly, methodically, as we already know what’s going on, now set in Washington, D.C., where the federal government is as inept as ever. Indeed, high-ranking officials are clearly pod people.
The film from 2008 also features Jeffrey Wright (of Westworld) as an assistant to Craig in his laboratory. Suspense veteran Josef Sommer also appears as some kind of Washington bigwig.
Kids are not immune in this film, and Kidman’s kid is central to her energy to fight the spores that want to turn us all into automatons without emotion. It seems that it is a good turn to save the human race from its own violent rages. You may turn into a pod person by means of projectile vomit, which is certainly cinematic.
Fortunately for us, no good deed by space monsters goes unpunished.