Escape from Area 51 (2021) Review
Taking its inspiration from the “Storm Area 51” meme of a couple of years ago, Escape from Area 51 purports to be the “true” story of what happened on that fateful September day. This is to say it’s a lame comedy made by people who should have but obviously didn’t, know better.
Escape from Area 51 begins with handheld footage of a group of attendees running around taking selfies, etc. before being zapped by a cartoon flying saucer. “Ok they’re dead” the film tells us “We need to find someone else to follow”. That is one of the film’s funnier moments.
While this is happening someone has knocked out the power to Area 51, which looks like a factory and seems to have two people, Henry (Leon M. Brown) and Dr. Landress (Veronica Farren, Choke, Amityville Vampire) assigned to it, by pissing on the base’s electric fence. This allows Sheera (Donna D’Errico, Baywatch, Survive the Game) to escape from her cell, grab her weapons and escape from Area 51 with the aid of what looks like a pair of ben wa balls.
However, while she was escaping, her ride home from Earth, Kyra (Anouk Samuel) has been captured by the evil Sklarr (Chris Browning, Why?, Shot Caller). Can she, with the help of Earthlings Molly (Chloe Amen), Ernest (Caleb Thomas, Candy Corn, Hanukkah), and Jerry (Devan Schoelen), evade Sklarr long enough to free her friend and escape for good?
Carlos Perez, who co-wrote Escape from Area 51 with director Eric Mittleman has several screenplays to his name, unfortunately, they include Monster: The Prehistoric Project and Amityville Vampire, two of the worst films I’ve reviewed. As for Mittleman, everything he directed before this was along the lines of Playboy’s Stripsearch UK: Naughty Housewives and Busty Naturals but don’t expect much raunchy humour or any T&A in Escape from Area 51. This is PG-13 stuff that never gets past anal probing jokes or Sheera’s orally operated data pod. If you happen to be 13 you’ll probably find that hysterical.
Escape from Area 51 also suffers from massive padding. There are all manner of music video-type sequences, random videos from alien-obsessed YouTubers, and animated scenes of dancing aliens that just pop up out of nowhere and have no connection to any of the characters. They aren’t funny and just make the film feel cheaper and even more amateurish than the main storyline. And considering this was produced by David Sterling (Children of Camp Blood, Axegrinder 2) for his company Sterling Production we can be sure it was cheap indeed.
The film does have a few good moments, Kelton Jones (Miranda Veil, The Evil Down the Street) and Clint Carney (Dry Blood) have brief but funny appearances near the start of the film. There’s also the creepy-looking alien corpse that Phira (Frankie Sixx, daughter of D’Errico and Motley Crue’s Nikki Sixx) performs a funeral ritual on. I’m not sure if that was done by special effects makeup man Joe Castro (Clown, It Wants Blood!) or Carney who’s credited with the film’s visual effects and frequently works as a prop maker. Whoever did it, did a nice job.
Unfortunately, apart from that, Escape from Area 51 is a disaster. At one point it even tries to be serious and tackle issues like self-esteem, bullying, and mass shootings. It brings them just long enough to say they’re bad before dropping them and going back to bad jokes.
Escape from Area 51 is available on Digital from Cleopatra Entertainment. It will be available Blu Ray and DVD on September 7th. You can check the film’s Facebook page for more information.