Entertaining film's depicted violence leaves this viewer with mixed feelings
Saw this with my son, who's a month shy of 10 years old. I have mixed feelings about it, as although there was no swearing or sexual innuendo, there was also no imagination to the drama, as from almost the beginning viewers take in repeated car chases, gun pointing and shooting, explosions and wrecks, or fist-fighting. All cartoonish, with no blood or depicted deaths, yet I am struck by how accustomed young people are becoming to this type of violence as depicted, in particular, in video games. The alien assassin in the movie was drawn conceptually from "The Terminator" and physically from "Predator," and was physically threatening throughout. I couldn't help but contrast the violence in this movie with the alien hunters in "E.T.," who didn't threaten violence against the kids in the film, yet nevertheless felt menacing. This film, though entertaining and with its star, Duane Johnson, undeniably appealing to kids, totally lacks that sense of cleverness. I'd advise parents with kids younger than 11 or 12 to think twice about taking their kids to see this if, for instance, they are bothered by the level of violence depicted in many "Mature" video games. This movie is at that level, minus the blood. Although an adult wouldn't find enough of interest here to go preview the movie before taking a child, I can also say had I seen this film on my own I might have gone thumbs-down for my 9-year-old seeing it, precisely because I don't want him getting so accustomed to this level of depicted violence that there's a separation from just how violent shootings, car or train collisions, and fights really are. (I'm writing this in the evening of the same day we saw the film, and wondering if he's going to feel scared at bedtime.) That said, he didn't seem to be bothered by anything in the film and said he'd give it a "3". I'd probably be closer to a "2 1/2," and definitely less for kids younger than 9.