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LifeMan’s obsession and curiosity with life beyond our tiny part of the universe keeps growing stronger with every new discovery. Sending scientists out to live on the International Space Station (ISS) for months on end is part of our everyday life now. And so it is likewise on screen and in books.

Each year we are presented with new imaginings of what lives beyond our planet and what those extra-terrestrial beings might think of us should we ever meet. Are they trying to explore our world just as we are exploring theirs? What do they look like? How do they communicate?

When a six-member crew of international astronauts – Russian Commander Ekaterina Golovkina (Olga Dihovichnaya), American engineer Rory Adams (Ryan Reynolds), British biologist Hugh Derry (Ariyon Bakare), Japanese pilot Sho Murakami (Hiroyuki Sanada), American crew doctor David Jordan (Jake Gyllenhaal), and British quarantine officer Miranda North (Rebecca Ferguson) – on the ISS retrieves what they believe to be a soil sample on Mars, the smartest decision they make is to not bring it back to Earth.As Derry studies the sample in an incubator and attempts to revive it, he observes that it is growing very rapidly and appears to evolve into something more akin to fauna than flora. This discovery is even broadcast back to Earth where a school in America has chosen to name this species “Calvin” after their school.

You know things never go well when you start bonding with an alien and giving it a name.

Despite being careful not to expose themselves to this new life-form, the crew suddenly find themselves under attack by this growing alien that resembles a scary mix of octopus and starfish. Cut off from all communications back to Earth, they can only rely on their own quick actions to try and out-smart Calvin.

Life is action-packed and intense. It recalls some of the best moments from the classic Alien without appearing repetitive or boring. The music and editing are kept tight and will have you on the edge of your seat throughout its duration. Despite a couple of “are you serious?” moments, there is never a dull moment and truly nobody is safe.

Directed by Daniel Espinosa and written by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, Life is showing across Australia from March 23rd. Be sure to catch it on the big screen because it is well worth the effort of leaving the comfort of your couch for it.

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