We've all seen all those TV shows that have swamped the genre scene over the past ten years or so, you know the sci fi shows that have the nucleus of aliens visiting the earth ala the alleged bodies taken to Roswell, now what if you found one of those alien corpses? What would you do in that situation? Would you run screaming to the authorities or perhaps think about how you could possibly make some financial gain from the situation? Well this is exactly the scenario in writer/director Ben Juhl's 'The Dead Link' - an entertaining slice of sci-fi/horror drama very much in the style of a modern day variation of the old EC genre comic book line.
The plot basically is based around Ray, his brother Bungy and two lady friends (Liz and Shannon) who are on a vacation of sorts as whilst visiting the guys mother they decide to go in search of some old Indian gold, a map for which they acquire from their superstitious mom. En route to their destination though they come across (yes you guessed it) what looks to be the corpse of an alien being so Ray (undoubtedly with the reward of riches in mind) gets the troupe to carry the body back to mom's ramshackle homestead. But before they get a chance to make a plan of action things start to take a strange turn of events and soon they find that their destiny has already been mapped out by their mysterious find.
As you can imagine 'The Dead Link' isn't by any means going to change the face of this particular sub genre (that is the alien carcass theme) but what writer/director/all round man of many talents does deliver is not only an entertaining side order of genre entertainment but what can only be described as his own perfect visual CV that should no doubt assure any producers out there that they can be confident in what he has the potential to deliver. With 'The Dead Link' Juhl wears many production hats and hence this is obviously the end product is a labor of love…as I said, the plot is straight out of the Weird Fantasy comic strips of the 1950's, not in that it's outdated in any way more that it's grounded in the world of the classic science fiction shorts of the likes of Bradbury and co. Juhl cleverly doesn't rely on the one trick horse that is the 'alien corpse' scenario adding a nice twist t the tale again like those old classic tales. The performances throughout are solid and respectable also, in fact although the film only has a core cast of only five performers it maintains a decent pace throughout with some nice tension and similarly convincing delivery. Whilst some of you reading may be wary of what seems to be a somewhat insular and claustrophobic scenario you'll find 'The Dead Link' has more than the simple sci-fi drama as creature feature fans can look forward to more than just a nice looking alien corpse with a fun (albeit regrettably all too brief) tip of the hat to 'The Thing's dog creature and a cool final reel that plays like a subdued tribute to Raimi's original Evil Dead short.
If you're a fan of solid sci-fi dramas then 'The Dead Link' is worth your attention, you'll also get the added bonus of checking out an upcoming filmmaker of great promise in the form of Ben Juhl. Nice work - remember that name!
Review by Alan Simpson
For more information on 'The Dead Link' and Twilightshow Entertainment visit the official site by clicking here.
|Directed by Ben Juhl|
|Released by Twilightshow Entertainment|