A decade after aliens have taken over Earth (hate it when that happens), humanity is divided between those who believe it’s best to collaborate with the new overlords and of course the plucky dissidents who still hope to regain the planet.

Director Rupert Wyatt (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) gets points for trying to do something different, and has worked hard to create an intelligent, layered political allegory, a comment on the human spirit that resonates today, blah blah. Thing is, he’s so focused on incisive social commentary that he’s sucked all the fun out of the genre. 

Now, I’m not saying every alien invasion flick has to be a big-deal romp like Independence Day, but they should at least be entertaining. This soulless, choppily edited, thrill-free exercise is just grim. Although it’s always good to see John Goodman, who can do anything, in any genre, his and other characters are poorly defined and there’s little narrative clarity. Frustrating and disappointing.

(109 min)