The minute Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard collaborated to bring us the creative satire The Cabin in the Woods, any filmmakers who then proceeded to tread over such territory, have had to do incredibly carefully, as the genre was so effectively deconstructed and ridiculed. So while The Vicious Brothers’ Extraterrestrial is unashamedly and affectionately conventional of horror movie tropes, the aforementioned spoof has deemed this stomping ground off limits.

Though April (Brittany Allen) had been anticipating a romantic retreat with her boyfriend Kyle (Freddie Stroma) to her parents’ cabin, the latter felt the need to extend the invitation to their friends, with Melanie (Melanie Papalia), Seth (Jesse Moss) and Lex (Anja Savcic) tagging along for the ride. However this seemingly peaceful vacation is disrupted by a gigantic UFO and the aliens journeying within it, who seem incensed in capturing, and then kidnapping the humans they prey upon.

Being lovingly archetypal of the B-movie genre is by no means a bad thing, but Extraterrestrial simply isn’t humorous enough to warrant such an approach, requiring more of a palpable tongue-in-cheek tone to justify the banality and cliched nature of the piece. With films of this ilk, where budgets are low and production value substandard to say the least, more emphasis needs to be put on the narrative, and there’s no money restrictions on a good, unique story – you just need a creative mind. However Extraterrestrial can’t even boast that, as a hackneyed, seen-it-all-before tale that has grown somewhat tired in contemporary cinema.

Meanwhile, there is so little chemistry between the group of friends it’s exceedingly difficult to abide in their friendship, as they seems like four complete strangers (or actors?) who have just been thrown together and told to spend some time together in an abandoned house. A very similar notion applies for the romance between April and Kyle too, which is rather difficult to invest in. Also, while rooting for the death of the protagonists can be a somewhat regular occurrence in horror movies, in this instance you want it to be as painful an experience as possible. Particularly for Seth – he’s supposed to be the cheeky, playful one, the loveable ‘class clown’ you could say. But he’s just a dick.

Ultimately, Extraterrestrial is a little overly ambitious and is compromised by the monetary limitations that exist. At times this picture can be good fun, but ultimately, this production simply isn’t scary enough. The filmmakers may be vicious by name, but unfortunately, they’re somewhat tepid by nature.