Plot: Miranda (Helena Mattson) is a young, beautiful college professor, but she has reached the end of her lifespan. After a blackout, she woke up in the carnage of a visceral slaughter, with no idea what happened around her. Her uncle Tom (Ben Cross) decides to finally reveal the truth to her however, that she is a clone, a hybrid of human and alien genetic materials. So while she isn’t a murderous person, her alien side can flare up and drive her into a violent rage. These outbursts are because of the limited lifespan of a clone, a side effect of the creation process. In an effort to repress her alien side, she and Tom head to Mexico, to hide out and find the creator of the clones, a colorful and eclectic scientist. He is aware of the flaw in his clones, but sees this as an acceptable part of the process, even if it kills his creations. Unwilling to just accept her inevitable demise, Miranda searches to find a solution to her impending death, but she also has a horde of other clones on the prowl. Can she figure out how to restore her human side in time, or will the alien DNA overtake her completely?
Entertainment Value: The fourth film in the Species series, The Awakening is by far the worst and a lackluster finale for this alien femme fatale franchise. This one is slow, overly long and drags like a stone at times. I have no idea why filmmakers wanted to focus on science over the hot alien bad ass chicks, but it would be a common thread in the series and it continues here. This time, no Natasha Henstridge and little connection to the other movies, aside from a female human/alien hybrid. I suppose there is some interest in the clone aspect of this narrative, but the movie dwells on the dull parts of the story and holds back on the sex and violence, which is what the series was built on. Some cool visuals do creep in, but they’re often dampened by some of the laziest, low end CGI you’ll ever witness. The cast is passable, with Helena Mattson looking hot but given little to do and Ben Cross doing his best to take things seriously. I did like a few scenes in this and its always fun to see a live birth in a Species movie, but this one just fizzles and can be a chore to sit through. Despite the series finding an audience thanks to Henstridge and the sex/violence aspects, Species: The Awakening is content to close things out with a boring, CGI soaked dud. Even if you’re a diehard fan of the Species flicks, you’re safe to skip this one. Just pretend it doesn’t exist.
A few topless scenes, the best of which features a goop covered Mattson being born from an alien cocoon. The other scenes are obscured thanks to some alien makeup, but hey alien breasts are breasts too, right? A lot of kills in this one, but they’re almost all done with CGI that makes Sega Dreamcast graphics look cutting edge. I have no idea how some of these shots made it through, as they rival the scorpion king reveal, which is not what effects should be aiming for. I will give a single point for the live birth and some makeup effects, but bear in mind, nearly all the cool moments are hindered by the bottom of the barrel CGI visuals. The dialogue here is totally forgettable. Not bad per se, but you won’t remember a single line once the end credits roll. I wish the writing was awful, at least then some fun lines might have crept in. Just bland, run of the mill dialogue here. No craziness whatsoever. I had high hopes for the alien bitch showdown, but it was a huge swing and miss. I would have loved things pushed to the edge more, instead of playing it safe and taking no risks. Species might not have been a cinematic titan of a series, but it deserves a better conclusion than this.
Overall Insanity: 0/10