Sci-Fi Spotlight: Found Footage in Space
I am a big fan of aliens and I also enjoy horror movies. This is great because there are many horror movies about aliens, classics like The Thing and of course Aliens. Now, I’m not much of a scientist, in fact, I studied history in college, but I do appreciate it when there is some real science to the aliens in a story.
In real life, people have been searching for life for as long as we’ve been able to see the stars. Of course, we’ve gotten better at understanding what’s actually out there and what conditions could create life on other planets. There are also discussions about places in our own solar system that could support extraterrestrial life. One of those places is Europa, a moon of Jupiter. Which is the setting for the film, Europa Report.
Europa Report is a story about a group of astronauts setting out on the first manned mission to Europa, where they are going to study the moon and determine if there is any life. They are hoping to find something like bacteria, but end up finding something a lot more dangerous. The film is found footage which I know is not everyone’s cup of tea, but I think it really works with the story they’re trying to tell.
Since the crew is being sent on such a long journey they can’t be in continuous and direct contact with the command base on Earth. So, they just periodically record video messages that they relay back to Earth. The film starts with the astronauts relaying messages home to their families mixed in with updates about the mission. Once the ship lands on Europa problems begin to arise. Conditions have made it impossible to relay messages and the ship landed off target which jeopardizes the entire mission.
Once things start to go wrong the crew starts getting more hostile with each other and we start getting clues to what the big reveal at the end of the movie is. I’m actually a big fan of how we get the individual parts of the story from all the crew members. I thought it was actually a really nice way to create tension because we’re learning things as the crew does. We don’t have an omniscient view of all of the moving parts. It also takes place in space, which I’m always a big fan of.
Of course, this movie is a found footage style horror movie. Which means it might not be for everyone. Especially since it doesn’t do anything special with the style. It’s just a typical found footage film. What I think makes it special is the fact that it’s set in space. It’s about people on a scientific mission to discover alien life. I think that’s a lot more fun and exciting than the typical people looking for ghosts in a spooky house set up.