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Review: THE INVADERS (2017) – Fantasia Film Festival 2018

A seven-minute short film from writer/director Mateo Marque, THE INVADERS uses classic science fiction and horror devices not only to tell a suspenseful tale but to drive home a point. A point made more timely by the actions of the American government. Actions that are being echoed in the words of some political parties here in Canada too for that matter.

Jayla (Isra Elsalihie) is a young Muslim woman, dressed in jeans, sneakers and a denim jacket, but also wearing a hajib. As she walks home one evening, she notices she is being followed and runs for the safety of her home. However, she finds home empty, and not as safe as she thought. First and foremost, THE INVADERS is a tense and suspenseful short film. It works its familiar elements well, which makes its reveal that much more effective. And that just drives its message home harder.

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Reading the headlines some days, it can be easy to forget that it wasn’t that long ago that the same bombings and shootings were being committed by Christians in Ireland and the UK. Or that, before 9/11 the deadliest act of terrorism on American soil was committed by a white, Christian, military veteran Timothy McVeigh. Should I hate and fear these groups as well?

Islamophobia is a growing issue. We need to remember that all groups, religious, political and cultural have extremists, and they are the threat and the enemy. Not the majority of people who believe whatever they believe while peacefully going about their lives.

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THE INVADERS is currently on the festival circuit and recently played Fantasia 2018. You can keep updated on future screenings at Cup of Joe’s Facebook page. Director Marque seems to be moving into the big leagues himself, currently, he’s part of the editorial team on S. Craig Zahler’s latest film DRAGGED ACROSS CONCRETE.

Our Score
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