Movies often use alien abductions to set up the extraterrestrial danger to come. In the aftermath of those abductions, the witness or person left behind is often portrayed as an outcast who may or may not be fully right; it’s a well-worn trope, but when it works, it works.
The trailer for the new indie movie Aliens Abducted My Parents and Now I Kinda Feel Left Out hits those same notes, but through a YA lens. In it, aspiring journalist Itsy Levan (Emma Tremblay) moves into town and meets her new neighbor, Calvin Kipler (Jacob Buster). Calvin claims both of his parents were taken by aliens when he was young and since spent years looking for a way to find them. Itsy soon gets involved in his quest for answers, mostly because she thinks that studying him will lead to a worthwhile story that gets her into college. But you know how it goes: once you get start spending time with someone for not entirely truthful reasons, you can’t help but form some kind of connection, can you?
“Although set in the 2020’s, [the movie] is somewhat of a throwback in storytelling,” wrote Jake van Wagoner in a press release. “I want to lean into that classic Spielbergian style of filmmaking...Aliens is really an homage to the movies that made me want to be a filmmaker.” Whether or not there actually are aliens in the movie itself, it looks like a touching enough watch regardless, and a reported 87 minutes, it’ll be just enough time to get invested in what’s going on.
Also featuring Will Forte and Elizabeth Mitchell, Aliens Abducted My Parents and Now I Kinda Feel Left Out is currently screening at Sundance Film Festival, and its red carpet premiere will be tonight.
Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.