The Faculty

"Invasion of the Student Body Snatchers," anyone? A sci- fi/horror thriller so derivative that it thoughtfully acknowledges its principal influences in the dialogue, screenwriter Kevin Williamson and director Robert Rodriguez's wise-to-its-audience shocker is nevertheless exactly the kind of sporadically clever, button-pushing fright-fest that keeps genre...read more

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Reviewed by Maitland McDonagh
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"Invasion of the Student Body Snatchers," anyone? A sci- fi/horror thriller so derivative that it thoughtfully acknowledges its principal influences in the dialogue, screenwriter Kevin Williamson and director Robert Rodriguez's wise-to-its-audience shocker

is nevertheless exactly the kind of sporadically clever, button-pushing fright-fest that keeps genre fans hanging on until something more fulfilling comes along. Like pretty much all high schoolers, the students of Herrington High are convinced their teachers are from another planet. Unlike most

disaffected teens, they're absolutely right. Their small Ohio town is ground zero of the invasion from space, and the faculty (who include Salma Hayek, Bebe Neuwirth, Robert Patrick, Piper Laurie, Famke Janssen and Daniel Von Bargen, some of whom come trailing scary associations from previous

films) are the first to succumb. So it's up to six mismatched adolescents -- the loner chick (Clea DuVall), the nerd (Elijah Wood), the reformed jock (Shawn Hatosy), the brilliant screw-up (Josh Harnett), the secretly unhappy cheerleader (Jordana Brewster) and the new girl (Laura Harris) -- to

save the world. The special effects are slithery and the plot picks and chooses among bits from INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, Robert Heinlein's THE PUPPET MASTERS, NIGHT OF THE CREEPS, INVADERS FROM MARS, John Carpenter's THE THING and even a soupcon of THE MAN WHO FELL TO EARTH. If those

ingredients mean anything to you, you'll probably get a kick out of the cocktail they add up to.

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  • Released: 1998
  • Rating: R
  • Review: "Invasion of the Student Body Snatchers," anyone? A sci- fi/horror thriller so derivative that it thoughtfully acknowledges its principal influences in the dialogue, screenwriter Kevin Williamson and director Robert Rodriguez's wise-to-its-audience shocker… (more)

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