Imagine your home suddenly invaded by extraterrestrial beings. This is the harrowing scenario presented in “No One Will Save You,” where an alien race descends upon a quiet American town, leaving Brynn Adams, an outcast, to fend for herself amidst the ruthless invasion. The film stars Kaitlyn Dever as Brynn, a local loner who seldom ventures into town and isn’t the most beloved resident when she does. With the arrival of otherworldly visitors of unknown intent, the film lives up to its title – there’s no one to rescue Brynn, and she must rely on her own wits to survive.
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“No One Will Save You” pays homage to several classic sci-fi and horror films, drawing visual inspiration from the likes of “Independence Day,” “Signs,” and even “The Village.” Comparisons to John Krasinski’s “A Quiet Place” wouldn’t be unfounded, as the film features minimal dialogue and terrifying alien creatures seemingly determined to eradicate humanity. However, “No One Will Save You” charts its unique course, offering unexpected twists and a stellar performance from Dever.
Written and directed by Brian Duffield, “No One Will Save You” is a captivating addition to the sci-fi horror genre. With minimal exposition, it maintains a constant state of tension from its opening moments to its unsettling conclusion. While Brynn’s personal backstory could have been more robust, the film compensates with inventive action sequences and intense scares. Duffield employs a staccato-style pacing that grants viewers only brief moments of respite amid heart-pounding battles and nerve-wracking scenes filled with anticipation. It’s the kind of movie that demands your full attention, as Dever confronts increasingly terrifying alien creatures whose motives remain obscure but whose presence is profoundly unsettling.
The meticulously crafted details of “No One Will Save You” set it apart from other genre offerings. The film’s score, composed by Joseph Trapanese, becomes a character in itself, guiding the audience through moments of emotion and occasional levity while evoking terror as Brynn fights for her life against the menacing aliens who’ve invaded her home. The sound design adds another layer of horror, with the alien creatures emitting an eerie, guttural tone, and every mysterious noise in the night inducing a breath-holding sense of fear, perfectly aligning the audience’s experience with Brynn’s.
The creature design in “No One Will Save You” is cleverly executed, offering a twist on the classic “little grey man” style of aliens often associated with UFO sightings and abductions from the 1960s. These aliens incorporate unsettling elements in their movements and features, each slightly different from the others, making them far more horrifying than their counterparts in “The X-Files” or “Stargate SG-1.” Through a blend of practical and CGI effects, as well as a retro small-town aesthetic, the movie feels timeless despite its 2022 setting. The practical effects provide a grounding element, while the CGI elements add an otherworldly quality to the thriller.
With breathtaking cinematography by DP Aaron Morton, one of the few drawbacks of “No One Will Save You” is its straight-to-streaming release. This is a film that would excel on the big screen, where audiences could collectively hold their breath during suspenseful moments and lean back in their seats in fearful anticipation. The film maximizes its modest budget with atmospheric aerial shots and impressive action sequences, creating a grand cinematic experience deserving of a theatrical release.
Kaitlyn Dever delivers one of her finest performances in “No One Will Save You.” Known for her outstanding roles in “Booksmart” and “Unbelievable,” Dever shines as she portrays a character fighting for her life. While the human aspect of Brynn’s backstory could have been more developed in a longer film, Dever’s expressions tell the whole story. She effortlessly transitions from hope to heartbreak, from outcast to terrified survivor, offering a nuanced performance that elicits both sympathy and fear.
“No One Will Save You” blends high-concept ideas with classic genre tropes, anchored by a compelling and captivating performance by Kaitlyn Dever. Consistently breaking away from her previous roles, Dever proves herself as a unique final girl, and her potential in the sci-fi and horror genres is exciting to contemplate. The film offers a fresh perspective on self-defense and isolation in the face of an alien invasion, all through the lens of riveting sci-fi horror. Dever, along with Brian Duffield’s anxiety-inducing script, elevates the movie, creating a thought-provoking thriller that is sure to become a favorite among genre enthusiasts.