Directed and Written by Joe Begos
In South Carolina there is a town called Kelly. The expression about a town being so small that you could throw a rock from end to end literally applies to this town. You see the sign that says “Kelly” on your right and barely 30 seconds later you see another sign and as you look in your rear-view mirror you will never guess what it says-yep-“Kelly”. Last I remember there are no houses or buildings between the two signs-just road and trees.
Almost Human could easily be considered the Kelly, South Carolina of horror films. It has opening credits and eight agonizingly slow minutes of end credits and an hour of nothing in between. Set between 1987 and 1989 it is supposedly the story of three friends-Rob, Mark and Seth-and how their lives are changed after Rob and Mark are snatched into the sky by a blue light from above. Rob is only mentioned as he was taken before the film begins. Mark is taken next and Seth is left to face accusations that he was responsible in some way for the disappearances of his friends. Mark is found naked in the woods by two hunters and covered in a substance that the only thing I can compare it to is one half of baby-making formula. Killing the two men after emitting an ungodly scream he steals their clothes and rifle before heading into town and murdering anyone who gets in his way. Mark doesn’t discriminate in his killing methods as he shoots, stabs, and slices and breaks necks. Afterward he ejects what resembles a tree branch from his mouth to theirs (although one scene shows mouth-t0-vagina) and they are cocooned before returning later as zombified versions of their former selves. The rest of Almost Human consists of Seth being a douche-bag emo as he spouts ‘Something is wrong, I can feel it’ to anyone who will listen including Jen, Mark’s former girlfriend. This, give or take a scene or two, is the plot of Almost Human.
My first thought after the movie was over was ‘did I miss something?’ What is the point of this movie? If writer-director Joe Begos was attempting to make a film about the aftermath of an alien abduction I have some bad news for him: Fire in the Sky already did that and better. Almost Human only serves to confuse, especially with its handling of Mark. We know he was taken by extraterrestrials. What confused me is where did Mark end and the alien entity that was obviously possessing him begin? When Mark returns to his former home to confront the new owners is it anger or E.T. that drives him? The same goes for when he meets Jen’s new fiancé. A little bit of plot and character development would have gone a long way in giving Almost Human any credibility.
I had heard a lot of comments from other reviewers concerning the quality of the acting in Almost Human. After seeing for myself I can safely say that the quality is somewhere between local car dealership commercials and pornographic films. In fact, if the acting in Almost Human is considered good in any way then there are adult film stars who deserve Oscar nominations.
There is an extra scene after the credits. I wouldn’t have known this if not for the trivia I read about the film. It doesn’t matter; in order for a film to make you sit through eight minutes of credits for an additional 20 second scene it has to keep you interested for the previous hour. Unless viewers are completely masochistic I don’t see anyone hanging around for that long.