The Invasion

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Published July 31, 2011

This summer, a mysterious, otherworldly presence is launching an attack on the lawless Wild West. Only a lone, hulking hero stands in the way of complete annihilation. No, we’re not talking about the titular extraterrestrials from Jon Favreau’s much-hyped $100 million (allegedly) summer actioner Cowboys & Aliens (Universal, July 29), but rather first-time director Joe Cornish’s SXSW hit Attack the Block (Sony Screen Gems, July 29), a micro-budget mega-thriller that places inner-city London kid Moses (newcomer John Boyega) and his crew of antialien gunslingers—or rather fireworks slingers—against a slew of rabid blue-toothed creatures from outer space. The film is one among a raft of anti-blockbuster blockbusters hitting theaters this season. Young writer-director Evan Glodell violently explores Mad Max-meets-Tiny Furniture angst with the Sundance/SXSW post-apocalyptic romance Bellflower (Oscilloscope, August 5), while in Another Earth (Fox Searchlight, July 22), indie-festival triple threat Brit Marling examines manslaughter and guilt against the backdrop of a new body in the skies