Movie review by
Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media
Skyline Movie Poster Image
Deadly dull alien attack movie has scary, gross effects.
  • PG-13
  • 2010
  • 92 minutes

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 10 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 17 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Aliens attack, randomly, out of nowhere, interrupting the lives and plans of several young adults. The humans want to survive, but they have no real idea how. They try to overcome this major challenge, but nothing they do -- and nothing anyone else does -- has any real effect.

Positive Role Models & Representations

East Coasters Jarrod and Elaine are presented as more admirable than the "soulless" Los Angeles residents, who are generally depicted as liars, cheaters, and not very nice. Jarrod is protective of Elaine, but his attempts to rescue the group usually come to nothing -- and he becomes less trusthworthy later on as events progress. The women usually look to the men for help.


Scary images of humans being abducted into alien spaceships; black veins begin to appear on human victims, and eyeballs turn white. Lots of gross creature effects, such as slime and brains. Giant aliens grab and "eat" humans. A character attacks an alien brain with an ax. Guns are pulled. Jet planes engage in a dogfight with alien ships, and missiles are fired. A character kills himself in a gas explosion in an effort to take out some of the monsters. Lots of arguing.


A man and a woman have implied sex in a bathroom at a party; cheating is suggested. At a party, people spy on the neighbors, and there's some implied oral sex. Girls in bikinis are seen near a swimming pool. The hero's girlfriend is pregnant; there's some discussion around this.


Several uses of "s--t," plus "oh my God," "hell," "damn," "son of a bitch," "ass," and "goddamn.,"

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Characters (young adults) drink lots of hard liquor during a birthday party.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this alien invasion movie has a lot in common with movies like War of the Worlds, Cloverfield, and Independence Day (though it's a lot duller). There are plenty of scary/violent scenes as giant spaceships capture hordes of humans, sucking them up through the sky, and, later, as monstrous aliens eat them. There are also lots of gross special effects, as well as some fighting, military-style action, and guns. Language includes several uses of "s--t," and there are some sexual situations (including implied oral sex) and some drinking.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent Written byBraidedLady February 25, 2019

Should be rated R

This movie seems like it was written by a college student. Aside from the plot being forced and the characters cliche, it’s gross and excessively violent. How i... Continue reading
Adult Written byPrimeSlayer June 17, 2015


This movie just sucks. I'm not gonna bother writing about the content because if you're smart, you won't watch this movie. In the event you do, I... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old May 30, 2013


The plot is great, but not for those who try to completely understand whats happening. The movie may be confusing for some people, which makes it less interesti... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old March 9, 2013

Not much of a plot

This film had no clear plot and was based on an alien invasion that the main characters knew little about. The special effects were good, and the aliens were fa... Continue reading

What's the story?

Jarrod (Eric Balfour) and Elaine (Scottie Thompson) fly to Los Angeles to visit Jarrod's old friend, Terry (Donald Faison), who works as a special effects man in the movie business. They throw a wild birthday party for Terry, who cheats on his girlfriend (Brittany Daniel) with his assistant (Crystal Reed). That night, huge alien spaceships attack the city and begin abducting humans by literally sucking them up into the sky. Smaller alien probes then begin scouring the city, using special lights to hypnotize victims. Can the five heroes survive by hiding out in Terry's apartment, or should they try to make a run for it? Better still, can they discover the reason for the attack?

Is it any good?

Directed by brothers Colin and Greg Strause, SKYLINE has an immediate low-budget feel, since the story takes place in a big city and has a tiny cast of only vaguely recognizable actors. When the movie focuses on its human "stars," it feels like there's very little at stake. None of them feel like real people, and none of them share any onscreen chemistry.

Things should get more interesting when the aliens attack, but the cheap-looking CG effects -- and creatures cobbled together fromthose in a dozen other movies -- make even the boring humans look interesting. The movie tries not to put all of its cards on the table right away, but in hiding certain information, things only become more illogical. (The aliens' behavior doesn't always make sense.) Still, the combination of giant, cheesy monster attacks and half-baked characters may ultimately earn the movie a cult/camp following.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's violence. Was it scary? Why are some kinds of action/violence exciting, while other types are frightening?

  • What do the aliens want? How do they go about getting it? Is there any way that their behavior resembles that of humans?

  • Could Jarrod be considered the hero of this story? What makes him heroic? What are his non-heroic traits?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love sci-fi

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