2022-11-25 13:00:05

Five Science Fiction Movies to Stream Now

Logo The New York Times
The New York Times
By Elisabeth Vincentelli

This months picks include movies about an alien best friend, zombies with a strong sense of smell and lab-created superwomen.

Im Totally Fine

Rent or buy on most major platforms.

Vanessa (Jillian Bell) is a wreck after the unexpected death of her childhood friend and business partner, Jennifer (Natalie Morales, from Dead to Me). Until Jennifer suddenly turns up again, fresh as a daisy. I am simply an extraterrestrial who has taken her form, she tells the stunned Vanessa the alien is a species observation officer and has been sent to study earthlings.

The premise is similar to that of Starman, from 1984, and both movies directly deal with grief and renewal. But whereas John Carpenters movie was a romance, Brandon Dermers Im Totally Fine borrows its structure from the buddy-comedy genre. And it is, indeed, quite funny, as well as sweetly affecting.

Bell mostly plays it straight, while Moraless performance is ceaselessly inventive, with every line reading feeling unexpected. The actress even injects new life into a sci-fi stock character the alien whose connection to emotion is theoretical. Jennifer 2.0 looks startlingly like her dead host but that does not mean she thinks or behaves like her. And while she has downloaded the original Jennifers memories, those do not translate into experience, and Jennifer 2.0 must learn as she goes along. Like, for example, friendship is real, and its best to not eat a whole sandwich in one gigantic bite.

Continue read on nytimes.com

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