Richard Stanley's Color Out Of Space is one of the best adaptations of an HP Lovecraft story made for both big and small screen I have ever seen. I am a fan of his first film Hardware and though I am not in possession of all the facts regarding his firing from the 1996 adaptation of The Island of Dr. Moreau, he appears to discuss his story of what happened in the documentary Lost Souls: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley's Island of Dr. Moreau. I am so happy Stanley is back with Color Out Of Space because I truly feel he deserves a chance to bring his unique talent and vision to cinemas once again. In this version Nicholas Cage and his family have moved into the farm his father owned in an attempt to lead a richer and healthier life. His wife (Joely Richardson) is recovering from breast cancer and has been somewhat distant from her husband since she had the mastectomy and presumably is in remission. His daughter practices incantations from a store bought copy of the Necronomicon in soft cover in the hopes that she can be sure her mother is cured and lastly she wants to leave the farm for a new life. This is a very important part of the esoteric puzzle because beginning with the daughter, many of the characters throughout the film appear to ask for things as if calling to a higher power and unfortunately, the power that arrives within a meteorite in a sense grants their wishes, but not in the way they expected.
The alien or entity is so vastly different from anything humans know of the universe that it can only be perceived as a color and personally I think this was a higher dimensional thing above even the fourth dimension as it's presence penetrates and mutates everything it touches seen and unseen including the perception of time and even transcends death for characters in the film. The movie will definitely remind genre film fans of Annihilation because it is very clear to me that both the Author who wrote the novel and the filmmaker that adapted it were probably inspired by Lovecraft's story Colour Out Of Space. There are just too many similarities. Esoteric elements in the film reflect gnostic philosophy or at least it could be viewed as such and some may believe it so. It also can be viewed as an alien consciousness trying to terraform the world and once again like Annihilation, there are strong suggestions that the entity is still present in plain sight and perhaps the apocalypse is just beginning and it takes is someone or something to take a drink of water .
The special effects are fantastic because they are mostly practical and some are reminiscent of John Carpenter's The Thing. In fact I would state that if the 2011 prequel had stuck to the effects work ADI did for that film as was done for Richard Stanley's Color Out Of Space, the 2011 The Thing prequel would have been a far more appreciated motion picture when it had it's theatrical run. As it is the balance between practical and CGI in the motion picture is practically perfect. Please note that I am unaware who did the effects for Color Out Of Space and am only likening it to the effects ADI did for the 2011 The Thing prequel because I believe had the studio not been insistent on CGI, that film would have been better.
Richard Stanley's feature film adaptation of HP Lovecraft's Color Out Of Space has had a limited theatrical run and will be debuting on 4K UHD Blu-ray and Blu-ray Disc on Tuesday February 25, 2020 at retailers on and offline and will also be available to rent and buy on digital, I already have it preordered.
(C) Copyright 2020 By Mark A. Rivera
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