• A Review Page For Those Movies You Watch At Home!

    Couch Potato Movie Reviews is, obviously, a blog that exclusively reviews movies. What makes this blog different is the fact that all of the films we are reviewing are all movies that are available on home movie rental companies such as Redbox, Netflix, Blockbuster, and your quickly disappearing neighborhood rental store. This blog is designed to take a more detailed look at those movies that either were sent straight to DVD, received a very limited release in the theaters, or were distributed through the art house or film festival circuit. We will also review those big Hollywood films, but only after they are available for home viewing.

    All the reviews are written by fans of the great art of film making rather than some newspaper reviewer or stuffy film student. We don’t know everything about film but we do know what we like, and we are more than happy to share our opinions with you. What you do with those opinions are totally up to you, although comments are welcome and encouraged.

    Each film review has a one to five star rating at the end of the critique. Here is what those star ratings mean for you couch potatoes:

    * * * * * : Five stars: go and buy this one, don’t just rent it!

    * * * * : Four stars: put this at the top of your rental list.

    * * * : Three stars: average, not bad just not great either.

    * * : Two stars: only rent if you have to see everything.

    * : One star: don’t waste your time with this.

The Day The Earth Stopped

TITLE: The Day The Earth Stopped

YEAR: 2008

GENRE: Science Fiction and Drama

Fairly new low budget studio The Asylum is most famous for making those ridiculous big monster films for the SyFy Channel, but they also create some straight to DVD releases that are mockbusters of much larger Hollywood productions. Much of The Asylum’s catalog consists of inconsistent productions that mostly are a waste of film although periodically they do make a remotely quality film. One of those would be Princess Of Mars, which was a fairly decent sci-fi romp for those who like Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers stories, and is proof that The Asylum films do have potential at times. The Day The Earth Stopped is a parody of the remake of The Day The Earth Stood Still, and to be honest is a better film than the Keanu Reeves debacle.

Josh Myron (played by C. Thomas Howell) is a military man who witnesses 666 robots who land on earth in strategic locations and giant cities around the entire planet. Two humanoids named Sky (Sinead McCafferty) and Man (Bug Hall) arrives as dignitaries on behalf of the robots and are promptly captured by military personnel. Upon interviewing Sky, Myron learns that the robots have been sent to destroy all humanity unless Sky or Man can find evidence that humanity is not as savage and dangerous as the rest of the galaxy believes and is worth saving. All attempts to destroy the robots have failed, so Myron knows that he must comply with the wishes of Sky to show the positive side of human nature in order to save the planet from certain destruction. Myron breaks Sky out from the hands of the military and takes her on a trek across the city to show her the bright side of man, but the twosome are continually being stalked by the military which sees Sky as the key to stop the robots from their mission.

As with most motion pictures from The Asylum, The Day The Earth Stopped is obviously low budget and relies too much on filler footage such as Sky and Myron running around and military planes and troops running drills to make the film full-length instead of using the time to develop characters or the overall story. That being said, The Day The Earth Stopped does have a few interesting aspects that makes the film worth seeing. The most interesting aspect is the definition of the positive side of human nature, in which nonbeliever Myron shows Sky the positive side of religion as his case for humanity. This may upset some atheists and agnostics, but the tour of churches and social organizations is an interesting approach that will spark some debate yet shows a side of faith that most non-believers do not acknowledge when criticizing those who believe in God. Most of the acting is surprisingly acceptable and this film lacks the hammy performances of most Asylum films. McCafferty (Street Racer) is a surprising find as she does an excellent job as the stoic, unemotional alien searching for evidence to save humanity; her reactions to compassionate acts are truly conflicting especially when she holds a newborn child and she does a fantastic job making the character believable. The CGI special effects are simple enough but effective, and the robots look straight out of a 1950’s movie yet more than acceptable for this production.

C. Thomas Howell is most famous for roles in 1980’s “brat pack” films such as The Outsiders, Red Dawn, and The Hitcher but has moved into directing low budget productions including The Asylum’s War Of The Worlds II: The Next Wave and The Land That Time Forgot as well as the Christian-based drama The Genesis Code. This is not a great film, but The Day The Earth Stopped does have some interesting moments worthy of discussion and delivers a great performance by an up and coming actress that hopefully will not be stereotyped for being in an Asylum production. I actually liked this film a whole lot better than the big budget The Day The Earth Stood Still (2008) after which it was based.

* * *

–Mark

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