Do you remember a film from 2010 called SKYLINE? If you’re like most people in North America you probably don’t, or like me have a very poor opinion of it. However, the film did well in much of the rest of the world and a sequel was announced. Now seven years later it’s here and writer/director Liam O’Donnell (co-writer of the original) has delivered a sequel, or as O’Donnell calls it a “sidequel” as it takes place at the same time as the original, that is everything a sci-fi action film should be.
LA cop Mark Corley (Frank Grillo THE PURGE films, DEMONIC) has a hard time dealing with the death of his wife. Currently, he’s on leave and trying to curb his drinking and control his son Trent (Jonny Weston JOHN DIES AT THE END, the INSURGENT films) who’s dealing with his grief by constantly getting into fights. They’re on their way back from picking Trent up at the police station yet again when aliens attack LA. Captured by the aliens and fighting to find his son, Mark ends up bringing the ship down in Laos where he and the survivors meet up with drug runners/resistance fighters led by Sua (Iko Uwais THE RAID 1&2, STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS) and Kanya (Pamelyn Chee AFTERIMAGES). Together they take a stand against the invaders.
BEYOND SKYLINE is a wild, frantic ride that kicks into gear in the first act and just never stops after that. There are fights on the ground in LA, fights on board the ship and fights among ancient temples in Laos. There’s scenes of mass destruction and one on one bloodshed, all manner of human and alien weapons plus hand to hand combat are constantly on display. Hell, there’s even a battle between two mechs as part of the film’s climactic battle.
Amidst all of the carnage BEYOND SKYLINE even manages to have a few serious themes running through it. Unsurprisingly there’s a strong theme about the bonds between family members, but it hits a few other themes. One of Mark’s allies is Sarge (Antonio Fargas Huggy Bear in the STARSKY AND HUTCH tv show, FOXY BROWN) a homeless veteran. And the Laotian setting even allows some dialogue on the Vietnamese War. But none of this gets in the way of the action or gets preachy, it’s just there in passing.
So, if you’ve been waiting for a sequel to the original film, (and the final couple from SKYLINE do turn up here), or are just looking for a great piece of sci-fi fun this is your film. It gets a limited release December 15th the same day as a much bigger budgeted sci-fi film. The choice is yours, but remember BEYOND SKYLINE isn’t infested with Porgs.