“Color Out of Space” is finally out on digital. I’ve been wanting to see it for a while and it does not disappoint.
The story is simple, and based on an old H.P. Lovecraft story. An alien life form carried by meteorite lands on a remote farm in the middle of the woods. It slowly infects the surrounding water, plant life, farm animals, and the family that lives on the farm. A young scientist is also around checking the local water supply and an old squatter lives somewhere on the farmer’s land.
What really sets this sci-fi horror film apart from others is that it uses color as a beautiful yet menacing character in the film. When things go pink and purple, you know something bad is about to happen. Bright lightening and pretty otherworldly flowers start populating the film. No one thinks to investigate these things because the Mayor of the nearby town has ulterior motives, and the family just keeps going about their daily lives as if a meteorite didn’t land next to their house.
There are some spectacular effects, both with lighting and makeup. Remember all those practical effects in “The Thing” that Kurt Russell went after with a blow torch? Much of what happens to some alpacas and the mother and son on the farm is much like that. The film quickly becomes as much a creature feature as it does sci-fi horror.
The cast is stellar. I’m not sure if Nicolas Cage’s character work in this film was scripted or not, but he does some pretty cool things with his characters mannerisms that add to the weirdness of the film. Joely Richardson and Madeleine Arthur bring to life a mother and daughter who react to the changing world around them in different ways. The mother cuts off two of her fingers and the daughter cuts on herself in an effort to save herself with witchcraft. Both the brothers are intentionally useless. The older doesn’t really seem to care much about anything and the younger is simply in awe of the changes going on around him.
This film is fantastic on so many levels. It required more than one viewing to catch all the details, and it gets better each time I watch it. It pairs well with Nicolas Cage’s other recent horror film, “Mandy”, and a good chocolate porter. Both “Mandy” and “Color out of Space” are available for purchase or rental on Vudu, Movies Anywhere, and Amazon Prime if you need something new to fill your quarantine with.