In the first Skyline film, an alien invasion took place. In the sequel, Beyond Skyline, the fight back began. This time in Skylines, the battle is taken to the alien planet in a bid to save mankind.
I found the Skyline franchise to be an interesting one and enjoyed seeing it progress in a an unexpectedly unique way. The First film starred Eric Balfour (2003’s The Texas Chainsaw Massacre) and Donald Faison (Scrubs) and mostly took place in a Los Angeles apartment where the characters used their wits to stay alive during alien takeover taking place in the city around them. The second installment followed Mark (Frank Grillo, Warror, Kingdom), a police detective, as he Picks up his estranged teenage son Trent from jail. Set at the same time as the original film’s events, Mark and Trent find themselves fighting off aliens while joining forces with a team prepared to make a stand.
In Skylines, set 15 years after the previous film, the main character is Captain Rose Corley (Lindsey Morgan, The 100), an alien-human hybrid who we first met Beyond Skyline. Rose, together Trent, now in alien form and with a team of elite mercenaries made up of Leon (Jonathan Howard, Godzilla: King of the Monsters), Owens (Daniel Bernhardt, Atomic Blonde) and Alexi (Ieva Andrejevaite), must invade an alien planet called Cobalt 1 and retrieve an item known as the core drive to help save humanity.
As the third part in the franchise, I was already impressed by the change of direction in the second part and that it brought in more elements into the Skyline universe, including international cast members Iko Uwais and Yayan Ruhian (both from The Raid). This, of course, meant that the film would feature great martial art fight scenes with humans against aliens and that it did. Ruhian also returns in this, making the connection between this and the last film even stronger.
The story features elements from sci-fi classics such as Aliens, having the character of Rose Corley, who resembles Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley as she is forced into leading the crew into alien territory. Lindsey Morgan plays Rose as a strong-minded fighter who is as good with her fists as she is with alien-weaponary. Also among the mercenaries is actor and martial artist Daniel Bernhardt, whose character Owens, may have other intentions. Bernhardt is a great actor and well known in the martial arts genre and is great to see him contribute to this and also add to the action. Other characters which help to shape the film include Grant (James Cosmo) and Dr Mal (Rhona Mitra, Doomsday).
The enjoyable highlights of the film include Yayan Ruhian, who’s arms were pulled off in the last film, going toe-to-toe with some of the aliens. There’s also a few moments that sci-fi fans will recognise as a nod to Aliens. The lead actress, Lindsey Morgan, carries the film as the anti-hero, being charismatic and tough. With a running time of more than 105 minutes some of the dialogue feels like it could have been taken out to give the film a smoother pace.
I found Skylines is a fun-filled threequel, perfect to meet the criteria for those not wanting a film takes itself too seriously. The visual effects work well especially when considering that this in an independently made, sci-fi film. There’s plenty to please many action fans from humans vs aliens, aliens fighting aliens and a Pacific Rim-style giant robot.
Vertical Entertainment presents SKYLINES on VOD in English-speaking territories 18 December