Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

There are few words that strike more fear in the hearts of movie watchers than the three words ‘Sci-Fi Original Movie’ and with good damn reason. Between our good friends at The Asylum and those loons over there at the Sci-Fi Channel, this is a consortium that seems to be attempting to liquefy the collective brains of the American people one frame at a time. But like a heroin addict who has had one too many hits I have built up an immunity to these wonderful productions and besides, my brain functions can’t get any lower so I can watch away. Last night we were privileged to watch the Sci-Fi Original ‘Showdown at Area 51’ which we must admit was absolutely terrible, but it was a ‘good’ kind of terrible. This movie wasn’t ‘Lake Placid 2’ terrible or ‘Fire Serpent’ terrible which were just flat unwatchable but more along the lines of ‘Mansquito’ or ‘Frankenfish’ terrible, meaning that there was fun and enjoyment to be had amidst its awfulness. Though your brain is still at some risk.

One of the reasons that ‘Showdown at Area 51’ is a cut above is because it gives propers to my old home town of Glorious St. Louis Mo! You gotta SHOW ME BABY! You may have thought that Area 51 was in the desert somewhere but this was simply a smokescreen to throw off you freaks and geeks as the real Area 51 in located in the Gateway to the West. Our film begins with a rather cheesy CGI sequence featuring a space battle between a couple of ships, with one of them crashing in St. Louis. Our alien hero Jude (Coby Bell) jumps out and disables the Area 51 guards while his pursuer, the evil – or maybe not – Kronnan (Jahidi White) is in hot pursuit straight murderizing Area 51 guards.

Our human hero is Jake Townsend (Jason London), a defrocked Area 51 guard who is now a wandering soul and only lives for his little brother Alex, and Budweiser. Alex is the current top Area 51 guard who unfortunately has gotten into the middle of this battle and will soon find himself fried to a crisp. Jake however doesn’t know this as yet

and invades the scene to hopefully find his brother only to run into Jude who has determined that he needs Jake’s help to find… The Omega Seed! Also along for the ride is Jakes ex-girlfriend Monica (Gigi Edgley) who is somehow associated with Area 51 and the crew in someway that I can’t remember. Now things start to get a little bit confusing. It seems that Kronnen is here prepping things for the Omega Race who are about to invade the world and kill every single one of us so that they can steal and harvest, get this, our pollution. Yes they could simply ask for it, but Jude informs us that they wouldn’t get the chance to kill anybody if they did that which would take away all the fun. Anyway to jump to the quick. our human heroes have to stick the Omega Rod that Jude has grabbed from Area 51 and stick it in the Omega Hole which is in a barn in Frontenac which will stop the Omega Seed from erupting its evil loins to the earth’s core while holding off Kronnen, the Omega Centurion.

The reasons why this movie is so much fun is too numerous to mention in one small article and probably requires a novella to truly appreciate its true terrible greatness. Jake is looking for his brother who is a pile of ashes somewhere and asks Jude if he killed him. The answer to this would be ‘yes’ however Jude looked at him confused wondering if Jake could offer up his definition of the word ‘dead’. This movie has Matt Freaking Houston in it. Nuff said. Our pretty female lead has the daunting job of aligning the glyphs on the rod with the glyphs on the holes of the seed since the alien from the planet that created this thing can’t do it. It looked tough for a while until she saw the letters on the rod that read ‘Jo’ that lines up nicely with letters on the seed that also read ‘Jo’. Damn good thing this woman has a PhD in languages. We loved the scene where the asshole Area 51 top commando chose to play chicken against Jake who was driving a milk truck. The problem being that the commando didn’t have a vehicle to play with. He lost. You and your girl are being chased in the woods by a murderous Omega Centurion and get separated. Upon finding your girl do you A) call out her name and let her know how relieved you are to see her or B) cautiously sneak up behind her and then suddenly lurch at her shoulder amidst a stunning orchestra hit thus scaring the shite out of her. The answer is obviously B. Upon finding out the person you love most on the planet earth is dead a grieving period of roughly 28 seconds is more than adequate, particularly if you’re heading back to the crib to screw your ex-girlfriend after saving the earth. A stranger knocks on your door and offers to remove all the garbage from your house and install a bunch of Glade Plug-ins. But doing this good deed gives him the uncontrollable urge to kill your ass. What do you do?

It just goes on and on and on. ‘Showdown at Area 51’ was filled was so much ‘stuff’ that it really should be experienced personally. Sure it’s bad when examining the acting, special effects and heaven forbid you're looking for something that makes even a little bit of sense, but it is loaded with a load of ridiculous goodness and it has Matt Freaking Houston in it. Nuff said.

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