If you thought Prometheus would have been better with a small budget, Last Days on Mars is the movie for you. Mars here is played by Jordan, which doesn’t look much different from Arizona. The landscapes look as if there might be a 7-11 if you just panned the camera a few degrees to the right. As a story, this goes exactly where you think it’s going to go (check out Europa Report for a space adventure with a real sense of mystery). At times, Last Days on Mars teases at a space horror romp on par with a Dead Space videogame, but it doesn’t have the stomach or R-rating for anything too visceral. So there’s a lot of running away from stuff, a lot of yelling about “what are we going to do?”, a lot of crawling through the inexplicable tunnels under this pre-fab Mars base, and a lot of supposedly smart astronauts doing stupid things to draw out the plot.
What’s most horrific is that it features a few actors who are good enough to know better. Sure, I get that Liev Schreiber, star of the Omen remake, would agree to phone in a laconic leading man performance. But how do you explain Elias Koteas, Olivia Williams, and Johnny Harris (see the brilliant London to Brighton and the middling Welcome to the Punch if you need any convincing about Harris)? Oh my. The production design is moderately nifty, if not awfully spacious. And I sure do like their Mars trucks. But it’s no Moon. And it’s ultimately a pretty pointless exercise in poorly done horror. Does Mars really need zombies?
Last Days on Mars is available now for video on demand. Watch it on Amazon.com to support Qt3.