Altered (2006)

November 14, 2012 - 7:06pm | FrighT MasteR
  Tags: abduction, Adam Kaufman, alien abduction, aliens, Altered, Brad William Henke, Catherine Mangan, Eduardo Sanchez, James Gammon, Mike Williams, Paul McCarthy Boyington, sci-fi, scifi, underrated

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Eduardo Sanchez
Adam Kaufman, Catherine Mangan, Brad William Henke, Paul McCarthy Boyington, James Gammon, Mike Williams

Ed Sanchez was sitting pretty for a number of years thanks to the huge success of The Blair Witch Project, which I personally didn't like. Of course, after a while he started to get the filmmaking bug again and met up with a fellow to co-write Probed, which we know today as Altered. Apparently Ed and a lot of the crew really dug what they accomplished and expected the studio to like it as much as them, but they apparently hated it and after bad reviews from test screenings the film was destined for the straight-to-DVD release. It's expected when you throw in an audience from the Hostel and Saw crowed into the screening, because this has nothing in common with those films. In fact, it may even range more towards the sci-fi crowed than anything. Regardless, this was pitted as a horror film and that's what people were expecting -- horror. And since a lot of viewers found Blair Witch scary (I found it more humorous than anything) they were expecting a lot from Ed. Attempting to break free from Blair's shadow was risky, but he dared to do it and I felt he did it successfully.

No, the movie isn't scary, but it is interesting and surprisingly fairly original. Fire From the Sky did the whole abduction-horror thing the best, but this movie did a pretty good job of using the same abduction concept, but throwing a curveball that we wouldn't expect. That's where our story begins -- a group of men are abducted 15-years prior, where during the incident something happens that essentially gives the aliens a reason to return to present day. Only this time the men manage to capture one of them, giving them the opportunity to extract revenge on what happened to them all those years ago. Little do they know, the alien's friends aren't far behind, but this time the men aren't going to be taken without putting up a fight. The movie is pretty slow-paced in the first half, building tension and giving us little insight on exactly what's happening. We don't even get to see the alien they captured until the second half, which is where the action picks up and gears us up for the climax.

I honestly enjoyed the movie. It was interesting and had a nice mixture of sci-fi and horror. It was fairly original and offered decent CGI and make-up effects, and there's some nice gore (mostly consisting of the intestines). My only gripe I have with it are that there were some scenes that were too dialogue-driven, which slowed the pace down more than it should have and there were a couple unanswered questions. Otherwise, I was pretty happy I got to check this out. A big improvement from Blair Witch and I look forward in seeing what else Ed has in stored for the genre.

A surprisingly decent and original film with a nice mix of both the sci-fi and horror genres. A little slow in parts, but worth a rent if you're looking for something different.

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FrighT MasteR's picture
FrighT MasteR is an avid horror fan / monster hunter extraordinaire, who created and has been running UHM since its inception, way back in 1999.




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