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Annihilation Movie Review by Ms. H

Written by RealMsH

Disclaimer:  The views expressed here are mine alone and do not represent those of

Introduction to Annihilation Movie Review by Ms. H

Sometimes I watch movies simply because there are good actors in the movie.  As a measure of the quality of the movie -- good actors in the movie sometimes equate to a good movie.  The movie Annihilation starred Natalie Portman and Tessa Thompson who have previously had roles in what I would call high quality-type movies such as The Black Swan for Natalie Portman and recently, Thor: Ragnarok for Tessa Thompson. However, regardless of their acting abilities, I do not think neither could have done anything to save the movie, Annihilation.

Name of the Movie - Annihilation

Let’s begin with the name of the movie.  I think the writer and director may have took too much literary license to title the movie Annihilation. It only took me a few minutes, maybe seconds after seeing the movie to determine that a better name for the movie would have been The Shimmer instead of Annihilation.  To the movie name’s credit, one of the characters did voice this word during the movie dialogue; however, I still could not correlate Annihilation to the actions in the movie.  

Plots of Annihilation Movie

After watching the movie Annihilation, I can actually see three plots in this movie, which may not be a good thing.  The three plots consist of finding the mystery of the shimmer, then finding the lighthouse, and last but not least finding the clones.  The movie Annihilation would have been better if maybe two of the three plots were developed fully. After a while this movie took on the metamorphosis of a fruit cake where you add all kinds of ingredients, because no one will really know what’s in it.  

Spoiler Alert: The plot that was out of place was the one that the audience had to wait for -- which was the idea of people having clones of themselves who mimic the motions of the real people.  By the time the movie got to this part, I wasn’t sure what was going to happen, so the writer-director did a good job of adding a surprise or suspense element to the movie.  However, the question was did the appearance of clones fit well with the other parts of the movie.

Annihilation Movie has “The Cabin in the Woods” Vibe

If you saw The Cabin of the Woods movie, you will recall the movie starts with several people embarking on a journey with the anticipation of experiencing  a fun adventure.  During the movie, one by one, each of the characters was eliminated  -- except for the star of the movie.  Similar to The Cabin in the Woods movie, almost all of the crew of women were eliminated. Spoiler Alert: By the end of the movie, only Natalie Portman’s character seemingly  was left  from the all -female crew who braved going into the shimmer.


The Questioning in Annihilation

In my opinion, It was not clear why Natalie Portman’s character was being questioned, unless the questioner was just curious about how she got back from the shimmer -- that is, if she really returned from the shimmer. By the way, Natalie Portman’s character  did not seem to be as robotic as her husband was when he managed to leave the lighthouse in the shimmer -- again --  if he really did.

Unanswered Questions in Annihilation

After I watched Annihilation there were unanswered questions, unless the intent was to leave the viewing audience hanging. For example, why did each of the researchers have to be eliminated in different ways? The most bizarre part was Tess Thompson’s character changing into a human shaped shrub.  But there are other questions as well.  For example, was Natalie Portman’s character the true character, and vice versa for her husband.  Spoiler Alert: What I didn’t like about the ending was the effect of light shown in both Natalie Portman’s and her husband’s eyes.  If their eyes are a key to discovering something about them, this should have been brought up during the earlier portions of the movie.

Assessment of Annihilation

Unfortunately, I cannot rate Annihilation high, even if good actors were in the movie.  The storyline did not flow smoothly and there was no link between the beginning of the movie and the end.  I think instead of being shown as a flashback as she was being questioned, the movie should have flowed chronological from start to finish.

 Rating of  Annihilation

 Based on a rating of 1 to 5 stars with 5 stars being the best, I rate Annihilation 2 stars.


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