The Reel Review

A

Natalie Portman stars in this adaptation of Jeff VanderMeer’s trippy 2014 novel about a team of female soldier/scientists exploring The Shimmer – a mysterious, inexplainable, otherworldly occurrence gradually spreading in a remote swamp. The further into The Shimmer they trek, the more mind-blowing the physical and psychological horrors they encounter, as well as terrifying discoveries about the teams that preceded them into this human roach motel. Portman and the strong supporting cast (Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez, Oscar Isaac) deliver all the feels in this cerebral thriller, which has astounding visual effects and an effectively creepy score. And like his subject matter, writer/director Alex Garland (Ex Machina) mutates the science fiction, horror and fantasy genres in such a fascinating, dread-inducing and visually innovative way that your head will STILL be spinning long after the credits roll.

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