The Reel Review
A couple taking a romantic camping getaway to the Pacific Northwest find terror, not love, when they encounter a body snatching alien from another planet, in this Paramount+ original sci-fi/horror starring Maika Monroe (Watcher, It Follows) and Jake Lacy (The White Lotus).
Featuring gorgeous wilderness scenery and some cool, trippy camerawork, the actual story from writer/directors Dan Berk and Robert Olsen is a clever one, incorporating mental illness, unresolved childhood trauma and relationship anxiety. The whole guessing game of who has become the body-snatched alien also makes for an entertaining first half definitely worth checking out.
The second half is when Significant Other veers off into the ditch, leaning into goofy, comic high camp (sorry, pun!) and trotting out some disappointingly weak practical and special effects. These guys rip off visuals from Aliens, Arrival, The Thing, The Blob, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, War of the Worlds, Annihilation and – well, you get the idea. Maika Monroe, however, is terrific, giving a very convincing, nuanced performance. A consistent, serious tone and some beefed up effects could have made Significant Other more of the marriage material it wanted to be instead of the fun but forgettable one-night stand that it is.
• Significant Other was filmed in and around Silver Falls, Oregon.
• Maika Monroe worked with Significant Other’s directors on their 2019 horror/comedy, Villains.
• After graduating from the University of North Carolina, Vermont-born Jake Lacy worked odd jobs in New York – nightclub bar-back, waiter, gym receptionist – prior to his big break in the 2010 ABC sitcom Better With You. Nominated for a 2022 Emmy for his supporting role in HBO’s The White Lotus, Lacy is married with two sons.