I like to think myself a connoisseur of science fiction film, or at the very least, a fan. I've seen the birth of the genre with George Méliès and Fritz Lang, enjoyed the black-and-white space tales that so often become MST3k fodder, and reveled in the several Philip K. Dick retellings. But I've never seen anything like Under the Skin, and I'm pretty sure that's why I like it.
Based on a book by Michel Faber, Under the Skin is about sex and consuming men—like actually eating them. Now, is that the craziest thing to ever happen in an Alien horror film? Hardly. But with Scarlett Johannson's powerful performance in the starring role along with the whole film feeling like its an art house piece, and you get one truly unique piece of sci-fi filmmaking.
Where alien sci-fi à la Ridley Scott is much more action-packed, director Jonathan Glazer's Under the Skin is much more of a slow burn with a majority of the movie's 108 minutes spent with Johansson prowling Glasgow for unsuspecting men, seducing them, and then, you know, eating them. Glazer has even said that some men they picked up while filming didn't even know they were in a movie at all. The movie does hit a few dull moments but patience pays off with a truly bizarre ending that I still don't know what to make of.
You can now stream Under the Skin on Amazon Prime Instant Video as of this week, and if you're sci-fi fan, make some time and also prepare yourself for one weird trip. [Amazon]