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Plot: Two scientists are selected to travel across the universe to the source of a distant transmission and potential life.
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|4.3/10 Votes: 393|
|5.9 Votes: 12 Popularity: 4.181|
Understated thoughtful sci-fi – on a budget
This is a great movie for people who aren’t expecting to be spoonfed a plot, and don’t demand splashy CGI and space battles in their sci-fi. If you like the genre for space operas and explosions, you will be bored and probably confused.
Rupert Graves and Ellie Kendrick star as Cane and Eva, alien colonists on a singular mission. Their culture is based on utilitarian uniformity, enforced by their telepathic connections – which are all the stronger in rare “twins” – and motivated by working for the good of the Hive. But, as they near Earth, the messily unique individualism of human life and its strange products, together with internal tragedy, cause the colonists’ resolve to unravel.
So far, so simplistic… and this is in many ways a very simple, very pared back movie with few truly original turns. The “humans are chaotic but beautiful” trope has been played out plenty of times before – but that’s not truly what Native rests on. The austere sets, mood lighting, and telepathy sequences replete with arthouse shots and sound design create a claustrophobic atmosphere that has more in common with small production theatre than most sci fi movies, and makes for a wholly character driven journey that explores concepts of individualism, identity, self-reliance and the aching need to connect – in any way possible.
There are a few mis-steps and the movie does waver a little into cliche and over-explanation, but more with the feeling of invoking familiar iconography than truly being a boring retread. With great performances and prickly chemistry from the two leads, and a deftness of world-building that leaves lots to the viewer’s imagination – plus a neatly uncompromising ending – I would recommend this a million times over any recent big budget laser battle fiasco.
After all, science fiction at its best dissects what it means to be human, and explores how we engage with the possibilities of our nature, our future, and our identity… and those are exactly the issues at Native’s heart.
Unpredictable and haunting
Quality cast and incredible atmosphere. What starts as a fairly simple premise soon morphs into a myriad of twists and thought provoking concepts. As with all great Sci-fi it takes a very current issue and explores it in a magnified future. Very refreshingly compared to some predictable modern storytelling I genuinely had no idea where the characters were going to go next. A beautifully unhurried pace and mood that harks back to 70s and early 80s film making. Native leaves you thinking about its questions about modern society for a long time after. Very recommended.
Original Language en
Rated Not Rated
Genre Drama, Sci-Fi
Director Daniel Fitzsimmons
Writer Neil Atkinson, Daniel Fitzsimmons
Actors Rupert Graves, Ellie Kendrick, Leanne Best
Country United Kingdom
Awards 2 wins & 5 nominations
Production Company Prima Donna Films
Sound Mix N/A
Aspect Ratio N/A
Film Length N/A
Negative Format N/A
Cinematographic Process N/A
Printed Film Format N/A