Something has gone terribly wrong at a remote mining facility on the other edge of the universe. When a team of rescuers are sent to bring back Whit Carmichael (Daniel MacPherson) the only survivor of the disaster, they discover more than they bargained for, and the now deranged Carmichael is the least of their worries.
Oh dear me. I had such high hopes for Infini, the new sci-fi / horror from Australian director / writer / producer Shane Abbess. Promoting itself as an Aliens hybrid one could have been forgiven for thinking that you’d be treated to two hours of H. R. Giger inspired monsters, munching their way through a gang of unfortunate space cadets, whilst marauding around some far flung galaxy outpost. And, if this had been the result of Abbess’ efforts, it could have been quite fun: though hardly new, it might at least have been mildly diverting. Unfortunately you know you’re in trouble when the promotional poster is better than the film itself. For what you have here is a 110 minute lacklustre mishmash of various futuristic classics, but with none of the verve or originality which made them stand out.
The film starts promisingly enough, introducing us to Carmichael as he says a poignant goodbye to his wife amidst the grimy glory of some Blade Runner’esque inner-city apartment block. Then he is whisked off to his first day in a new job as part of an elite army force who can be transported to any part of the universe in a matter of seconds, in order to rescue soldiers or workers who have encountered trouble whilst exploring the farthest reaches of space. So far, so good. It’s only when Carmichael – now stranded in some remote mining facility – is followed by another team of would-be rescuers – who are so one-dimensional there’s little point giving them any in-depth analysis – that the troubles for not only the characters, but also the film, really start.
Modern film-makers increasingly appear to think that to make a horror film you simply have to throw a group of rugged, foul-mouthed characters (both male and female) together, put them in an environment which exists in a permanent state of semi-darkness, add a couple of weird reptilian creatures and lashings of blood and unnecessary physical damage, and you have a passably scary movie. Unfortunately for them, horror fans are a little more discerning than many give them credit for, meaning that they can see films like Infini for what they really are. Admittedly the film does have a potential germ of promise. There is something very nasty living in a lab in the mining facility which, when eventually encountered by the protagonists, is genuinely disturbing. This one ray of hope however, is soon lost, along with everything else in the film, amongst an endless mass of shadowy and steam shrouded corridors and overly gory dead-ends, from which there seems little hope of escape.
I could go on, as I did when watching the film, in the hope that I could find something good to say about it. Unfortunately I didn’t, so I won’t, and if you do you only have yourself to blame. Just remember, in the words of this film’s illustrious predecessor – ‘in space, no one can hear you scream’.
Words: Cleaver Patterson