With so many movies seeming like copies of each other, when something really different comes along it is hard to know what to make of it.
Under The Skin deserves a new category, which is Erotic Science Fiction Horror. I am sure that erotic science fiction has been done before, but it is rare to see it in a mainstream movie. Scarlett Johansson plays an alien seductress who lures Scottish men to their doom. She invites them to an abandoned building, and in a scene that is repeated a few times, she walks across a strange room with a black reflective floor. As the disrobing men walk across the floor they sink into it, but somehow fail to notice. The men get trapped in a watery world underneath the floor. Half way through the movie we see the horrible fate that awaits these men.
About an hour into the movie the alien seductress starts to show signs of becoming more human and begins to explore her humanity. There is a payoff at the end where we get to see what the alien really looks like.
Although I enjoyed the film for what it is, I think that most people would find the movie too slow. In scene after scene we see the alien driving, walking, climbing and exploring. These scenes drag on way too long. It is comparable to Locke, but with much less plot. What keeps the movie somewhat entertaining is the tension of not knowing who the alien is or what its motives are. The suspense is just barely enough to keep the movie going, but I can't imagine wanting to see the movie a second time.
There are surreal scenes in the film that are reminiscent of 2001 A Space Odyssey. However, these also drag on way too long.
Whether you like this movie depends upon if you like movies of this type. I do, but for most people I wouldn't recommend it.
Rating: * * 1/2