A Trippy Milla Jovovich Movie Is Streaming On Netflix Now

By Tyler Pisapia | 1 month ago

mila jovovich resident evil

One of Milla Jovovich’s most spine-tingling science fiction thrillers just made its way to Netflix for a new generation of streaming viewers to get terrified by it. In 2009, the semi-found-footage pseudodocumentary The Fourth Kind came and went without much fanfare. With a modest opening across a little more than 2,500 theaters, Box Office Mojo reports that the film grossed more than $47,709,000 worldwide on an estimated budget of just $10 million. Those are the kinds of margins that make creative found-footage movies such a lucrative genre in the horror and science-fiction worlds. Still, its indie release and unfavorable reception by critics left the Milla Jovovich movie relatively unknown except for those who managed to view it at the time and were struck by how impossibly creepy it is. 

The movie focuses on Milla Jovovich’s character, Dr. Abigail “Abbey” Tyler. In the present day, she is at Chapman University as part of a televised interview about a series of events that took place in Nome, Alaska in 2000. She works as a hypnotherapist and soon starts to put a pattern together among the people in the area that they are repressing memories of what was very likely an alien abduction — several, even. People are going missing and others are going mad remembering words in ancient Sumerian embedded into their heads. As she further unravels the plot, Abbey begins to realize that she too may be repressing memories of abduction and that the aliens who are experimenting on people in the area may not be taking too kindly to her uncovering secrets they so painstakingly worked to keep. 

milla jovovich the fourth kind

There are two things that make The Fourth Kind such a compelling and downright horrifying science fiction thriller outside of Milla Jovovich’s performance. The first is that it uses aliens to dive into religion in many ways. Often the people who the aliens abduct or use to communicate with her through hypnosis aren’t doing so through flashy lights and flying saucers. Instead, the symptoms their Earthen vessels take often mirror stories of demonic possession. At one point, someone undergoing hypnosis floats off the bed and contorts his body in a strange way before speaking in a voice that is not his own — very Exorcist, no? Add onto that the use of the Sumerian language as well as an alien declaring itself a “savior,” “the father” and “God” at one point and it becomes clear that these creatures are the basis of modern religion. 

The second thing that makes The Fourth Kind so scary is the fact that it purposely blurs the line between reality and fiction. Its tagline is even “What do you believe?” By using a found-footage format as well as filling in the blanks with a plot-explained re-enactment device, viewers struggle to really feel like they’re watching a movie and not simply a well-made documentary about actual events that happened in real life. In fact, CNN reported at the time of its release that the real town of Nome, Alaska wasn’t too thrilled by its portrayal in the movie. It wasn’t just name-checked by the filmmakers either. The plot uses a string of actual disappearances that were investigated by the FBI as a jumping-off point to blame aliens as the culprits. While it’s typically pretty easy to tell in hindsight when a film is just messing with its viewers, the use of a real-life unsolved case makes The Fourth Kind a particularly tough one — not to mention the fact that it’s a little disrespectful to the families of the missing and deceased. In many ways, if known actress Milla Jovovich wasn’t attached to the project, it would be really easy to mistake it as an actual documentary. 

milla jovovich the fourth kind

In fact, the people of Alaska were so miffed by the Milla Jovovich movie using its real-life stories as works of fiction, that Universal ended up having to settle a lawsuit brought on by a collection of local media outlets who were upset that their real-life reporting was used both in the plot of the film as well as a promotional website that ultimately led audiences to the conclusion that these reporters, who were discussing the likelihood that most of the missing people in Nome died due to exposure to the area’s harsh climate, were scratching the surface of some larger alien conspiracy. While that may sound cool, it’s not exactly what these reporters were trying to do, nor was it how they intended their work to go mainstream. Anchorage Daily News reports that the studio paid $20,000 in a settlement and made a $2,500 donation as penance for its actions. 

Regardless of the controversy that surrounded it, The Fourth Kind remains a sleeper science fiction/horror hit that’s sure to entire a new audience of Milla Jovovich fans on Netflix.