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Egor Abramenko explodes onto the feature length scene with his gripping directorial debut, Sputnik.
Powering his tried-and-true "extraterrestrial stowaway" plot is an award decorated ensemble of actors who's chops are not wasted on a cast of complex characters - deeply flawed, genuine and human. Russian born leads, Oksana Akinshina and Pyotr Fyodorov, bring to life a captivating on screen relationship, equally wrought in both the quietly charged dialogues between therapist and patient and the hair raising, death defying action sequences. As brilliant the acting ensemble and intelligent the script, Abramenko's monster manages to keep pace. Calculating and motivated, the computer generated alien is exceptionally terrifying and intriguing. It's beautifully unique design is backed by real world science which justifies every juicy anatomical detail down to the fear factor - accredited to a fatal taste for cortisol (the stress hormone). Creature feature aficionados who feel the need to poke holes in a near perfect flick may focus on the lack of practical effects. Yes, achieving more of the creature effects with practical techniques like squibs, prosthetics and puppetry would have been a nice perk, but Sputnik's use of incredibly advanced CGI is tasteful and does all it needs to push the story forward. Plus there's plenty of high caliber makeups from beauty to gore that should keep the nay sayers at bay. Egor Abramenko's Sputnik is a head turning first feature that draws a fresh idea out of a heavily trodden corner of the alien genre.




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