Thursday, September 15, 2016

My Mum Talks To Aliens

A skeptic son treats his mother who has written several books about aliens like a jerk in this paranormal documentary. A veterinarian son travels with his author mother while she attempts to enlighten him on her career, meanwhile he whines about how embarrassed he is and calls her a loony. In an attempt to justify herself, one of her abductee clients fails a lie detector test, which doesn't bode well for her case. She then attends a UFO debate and sits on a panel with astrophysicists, where she's savaged in front of college students. This causes him to reevaluate his feelings about his mother, and calls her brave in the face of ridicule. She shows him a video of lights in the sky, which confounds him. Playing her final card, the pair meets a man who supposedly has alien DNA evidence, and then they meet an astrophysicist who scans the sky for laser signals from outer space. The man with the alien DNA takes a polygraph test and passes, which perplexes the son further.

Less a story about aliens than it is about the dynamics between an arrogant, disrespectful son and his wide-eyed mother, My Mum Talks With Aliens is a paranormal documentary likely to bore the UFO enthusiast, but might thrill those looking for a familial drama with an extraterrestrial twist. Although the evidence presented in the film is suspect at best, and tries to show her in the best light possible while skirting some unflattering talk of crop circles, the mother seems to be patient, caring, and overly earnest about the subject of UFOs, but is always a professional businesswoman, who clings to an unconventional belief system which threatens her family life, but never thoroughly earns the label of 'loony'. The son comes off as petulant, and seems too easily swayed at lie-detector evidence and inconclusive Youtube UFO footage. I'm glad he came around to a half-hearted appreciation of his mother, in spite of her unscientific beliefs, but she should have stood him in a corner for backtalk and sass long ago.

ICYMI, I reviewed the horror-themed game show Hellevator at Cultured Vultures. You should check it out.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Top Spin

The lives of several competitive table tennis players are examined as they head to the Olympics in this sports documentary. Highlighted by dynamic slo-mo footage of table tennis players in action, the intense pressure and grueling workout regimens of these athletes is examined in a day-by-day format until the Olympic Trials. Balancing school and practice, the dedication & sacrifice the athletes endure is remarkable. Illuminating differences in styles of play, techniques in offense and defense, and varying spins on the ball help to clarify misconceptions on a sport that is somewhat obscure in the US, and often just seen as a pastime.