The Fresno Bee (Sunday) - - View from the couch -

This melo­drama might seem like “In­de­pen­dence Day” meets “Red Dawn” meets any num­ber of other alien-in­va­sion or enemy-oc­cu­pa­tion movies – and it is that to a large de­gree, but thanks to clever writ­ing and di­rect­ing and smart cast­ing, it also plays ef­fec­tively into the gen­eral para­noia of our times. Its fo­cus is on an area of Chicago that has been oc­cu­pied by ex­trater­res­tri­als, and while many res­i­dents ac­cept their ap­par­ent fate to be un­der alien rule, bands of free­dom fight­ers arise to chal­lenge the op­pres­sors ... and to prompt law en­forcers to try to con­tain them, so as to limit the po­ten­tial may­hem. There are lit­eral mon­sters here, but direc­tor and co-writer Ru­pert Wy­att wisely keeps the em­pha­sis on the hu­man el­e­ment, and what cer­tain in­di­vid­u­als do what they feel they must. John Good­man, Vera Farmiga and Ashton San­ders (“Moon­light”) have prom­i­nent roles. (PG-13: AS, P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On De­mand)

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