Branded, the new alien invasion thriller from writer/directors Jamie Bradshaw and Aleksandr Dulerayn, is sort of sneaking into theaters this September. At least compared to some other upcoming sci-fi movies. But we’re still building up towards the release, and a new trailer debuted at San Diego Comic Con this week.
Watching this trailer you can’t help but think of John Carpenter’s They Live. Aliens have invaded and integrated themselves deeply into daily life, and only one guy can see them for what they truly are. There are some cool visuals going on, like corporate logos coming to life as giant monsters, flying around, and climbing buildings, and the trailer is full of QR codes that you can scan with your smart phone. That’s an interesting way to embed Easter eggs and viral extras in movie marketing.
Set in a dystopian future, Branded explores a world where corporate conglomerations are involved in a massive conspiracy to literally get in people’s minds. Only Misha Galkin (Ed Stoppard) can reveal the truth and free humanity, though not without an epic scale battle with the dark forces that secretly control the world.
Even though all the genre bells and whistles are in place, it’s been difficult to get excited for Branded. Something about the film is reminiscent of recent sci-fi disappointments like Skyline and Darkest Hour. Movies we got excited about, only to ultimately let us down.
Branded opens September 7th, and also stars Leelee Sobieski, Max Von Sydow, Jeffrey Tambor, and Ingeborga Dapkunaite.