Alaska psychiatrist Dr Abigail Tyler, already traumatised by the mysterious death of her husband, wonders why so many of her patients have bad dreams about owls and uses hypnosis to investigate the very bad things which are happening in the area.
Though Close Encounters of the Third Kind featured alien abductions, the phenomenon wasn’t big enough in 1977 to feature on the scale of ‘encounters’ listed in Steven Spielberg’s film – all these years on, we’re so familiar with the anal-probers from Uranus that this reprises that well-remembered CE3K and adds an explanation of the Fourth Kind of Encounter, which is ‘when they take you away.’ Director-writer Olatunde Osunsanmi (who made the least of the recent cycle of caving horror films, WIthIN) appears as himself in scenes which try to sell this as a true story, but few will be convinced. Yet another farrago about big-eyed non-human intelligences who speak in Sumerian and borrow ordinary Americans for experiments involving drills, this tarts up its warmed-over X-Files action by cutting between what purports to be actual footage of the real hypnosis sessions and conventionally filmed ‘recreations’ with recognisable actors (an earnest Milla Jovovich plays Abigail, upstaged by the uncredited actress who is hilarious as the supposedly real woman). This is a clumsier gimmick than the ‘found footage’ angle of Blair Witch or Paranormal Activity, and serves mainly to undermine attempts to get scary.
Liable to disappear mysteriously from cinemas.