From Other Worlds



Belladonna Prods.

NEW YORK -- A tired sci-fi spoof that fails to deliver on its promise of satirical comedy, this feature debut from Barry Strugatz (screenwriter of "Married to the Mob" and "She-Devil") is mainly notable for its authentic Brooklyn locations. Starring Cara Buono as a bored housewife who suspects that she's come into a close encounter with aliens, "From Other Worlds" squanders the cleverness of its concept with a lackluster execution. The film is currently being shown at New York's Cinema Village.

After Joanne imagines that she's been abducted by aliens thanks to some mysterious visions and a strange mark on her body, she attends a support group for fellow U.F.O. fanatics. There she meets Abraham (Isaach De Bankole), an African immigrant who has the same mark. Bonding together, they find themselves attempting to save the world after sharing an encounter with a helpful alien who instructs them to steal an apparently highly destructive Egyptian scroll from the Brooklyn Museum. Meanwhile, Joanne's aggrieved husband (David Lansbury) becomes increasingly suspicious that she's having an affair.

Strugatz's script has a few clever moments poking fun at the alien contact subculture, but is ultimately undone by its lack of subtlety and degeneration into broad sci-fi comedy. Not helping matters are the amateurish direction and the charmless performances, with even such normally reliable supporting players as Melissa Leo and Marcia Jean Kurtz floundering in their overly broad characterizations.