The Osiris Child: Science Fiction Volume One (NR)

SciFi/Fantasy 99 min. October 6, 2017
By Chris Packham
Maybe it was a misreading of Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction, or a misguided fondness for ABC's Lost, but at some point, screenwriters made up a shitty narrative rule that says that if something interesting is about to happen, hard cut to a flashback. Such is the case of The Osiris Child, a series of scenes that cut away from interesting developments to flashbacks with a vengeance, as though "interesting developments" killed director Shane Abbess' dog.

A prison riot leads to the release of genetically engineered monsters on a distant planet, and spaceman Kane Sommerville (not the film's most ridiculous name) must break a quarantine to save his young daughter, assisted by escaped convict Sy Lombrok (there you go). The story is cut into "chapters" with breaks occurring the instant before a scene can achieve some kind of emotional or narrative beat.

The exasperating villains, including Rachel Griffiths as a space bureaucrat and Temuera Morrison as the space warden of space prison, give a lot of cold, indifferent speeches about evolution, perseverance and survival at all costs—bad-guy word salad like, "Don't fight it, don't fear it. Allow yourself to be the manifestation of the monster that I know lives inside your soul." Sweet Jesus, this movie.

But if there's one thing aspiring filmmakers can take away from The Osiris Child, it's this: Jules and Vincent talked about the quarter pounders of Amsterdam 23 goddamn years ago. We've been milking narrative nonlinearity for basically a quarter-century, and now its withered old teats are dry and squirting dust into the bucket. In 2017, telling a story contiguously from beginning to end would be edgy as fuck, the absolute spearhead of avant garde cinema.
Shane Abbess Daniel MacPherson, Kellan Lutz Shane Abbess, Matthew Graham, Brett Thornquest, Sidoine Abbene RLJ Entertainment

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