Movie Review: Assimilate (2019)

Synopsis: A pair of high school seniors making a web documentary about their sleepy (boring) Missouri small town discover the town's residents are being killed and replaced by perfect copies.

Who's in it? The movie stars Joel Courtney, Calum Worthy, Andi Matichak, Katherine McNamara and Cam Gigandet.

Review: Even though my wife had (virtual) kickboxing yesterday evening, we had a little bit of time before bed and wound up picking out this movie on Netflix. This was pretty much just a random pick because the description left a lot to the imagination. And, I'm not going to say it was a mistake because we didn't exactly hate this film. But, it was pretty easy to understand why it was the first time either of us had ever heard of it.

Let's put it this way. If you have seen Invasion of the Body Snatchers (either version), you have already seen this movie. In fact, with the exception of it being modernized to include things like the internet, cell phones and, of course, video cameras, there's really nothing about this film that sets it apart from the movie it is obviously copying.

To be fair, if I lacked movie knowledge and not known about the previous incarnations, I do think this movie would have been more than watchable. The acting wasn't terrible and the film did a decent-enough job building up suspense, especially as more and more people were replaced around town and it became harder to figure out who was real and who was a copy.

My only real complaint about this film (again, pretending it wasn't another remake) is I felt as though the two main characters, Zach (Courtney) and Kayla (Matichak) took way too long to try to find their way out of town. Personally, if it were me, I would have been stealing a car right around the time I figured out what was happening rather than trying to collect evidence.

I also was a bit on the fence about the ending. I didn't exactly hate it. But, it was obvious the writers were trying to set up the potential for a sequel. This movie, instead, desperately needed some sort of shocking close, similar to the 1978 version that had a surprise scare followed by silence as the credits rolled (that movie ending scared the crap out of my wife). It might have made it a little more memorable.

Final Opinion: I didn't hate it. But, compared to the other two Invasion of the Body Snatchers movies, it comes in at a distant third.

My Grade: C+


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