When aliens arrive in giant ships, the Earth suffers under four waves of attacks: power outages, natural disasters, epidemics and then a parasitic infestation of humans by the aliens themselves.
American teenager Cassie (Chloë Grace Moretz) is quickly rendered alone in a hostile world of paranoid survivors and the murderous infected, controlled by the aliens.
Cassie just wants to find her lost little brother before he’s turned into a child soldier for one side or the other.
But of course nothing is as it seems.
We scream at the top of our lungs, “Hell no, we won’t go!”
TAYLOR: But we went.
While it is true that there couldn’t be good movies if we didn’t have bad ones to provide a contrast, sometimes I wonder why I put myself through this. Most movies are average by definition and blend together into a sea of mediocrity, but The 5th Wave stands out.
HOWE: Yeah, at the bottom of the pile.
The 5th Wave has to be one of the worst movies I have seen, EVER. The narrating is nauseating, the storyline unbelievable, and the acting worse than a cast from an American daytime soap opera.
It is nothing new in a movie to see child soldiers – Ender’s Game springs to mind – but that was an OK movie with a somewhat decent plot. The 5th Wave, on the other hand, is just awful.
TAYLOR: When you find out “the reason” that these kids are being asked to fight, it makes no sense. It’s not that I can’t accept young psyches as the most moldable, or even parasitic aliens doing so, quite the contrary. I’ll even applaud the metaphor in these tales. But all these movies are the same. We are attempting to raise a generation of kids that understand we shouldn’t fight each other, we should fight the powers that make us fight each other. Fine. Great! I still don’t need to see the same movie over and over again.
Every single other dystopian teenage film is better than this one. I dread having to sit through another four hours of torture for the series to dole out enough information to wrap up ridiculously.
HOWE: Do yourself a favour, save your brain cells and your wallet from this utterly terrible mess that Sony is trying to pass off as entertainment. You have been warned.
– Howe gives The 5th Wave 0.5 cross necklaces out of 5.
– Taylor gives it 1 finger out of 5.
Reel Reviews with Brian Taylor and Peter Howe appears in The Morning Star every Friday and Sunday.