Film Review: THE DAWNSEEKER (2018)

THE DAWNSEEKER ** USA 2018 Dir: Justin Price 81 mins 

Five mercenaries are sent to an uncharted planet to get a rare mineral that will save the Earth. Once on the planet they are soon aware that they are being hunted by an alien stronger then anything they have encountered before. This alien known as The Dawnseeker also requires this mineral to sustain itself so it becomes a battle of survival for both species.
This is the most I could glean from this Sci-Fi B movie to come anywhere close to describing it in a nutshell, it is quite hard to know exactly what is going on here. It is no secret that I am not a huge fan of Justin Prices movies, but having only seen a couple of his offerings I do not write them off completely when they get sent in my direction. I will always give them the benefit of the doubt and will refrain from commenting until the final credits roll. This one however did not do much to redeem him but I will admit to being pleasantly surprised by a couple of things. The acting, for one, is an improvement on some of his other movies. Franziska Schissler as lead female Fenix (pronounced Phoenix) is quite stunning and commands her character fairly well. Khu, who has appeared in several of Prices movies in various capacities as well as acting, plays fugitive Zan (for those that may be interested to know, yes she still has amazing hair!!), it also stars Alexander Kane as York. None of these are what you would call stand out characters but they do an ok job. The rest of the cast are, well, I won’t go into any more detail. The CGI is really quite awful, it’s very clumsy and the attention to detail is non existent. But they have at least tried to use other SFX as well as CGI. Unfortunately their attempt at stop motion is laughable but I appreciated the effort, practical FX are also present and are pretty good in a couple of close ups. The Dawnseeker itself appears quite frequently sometimes created by CGI and other times is a guy in a suit. This movie very much  smacks of 1987’s Predator with the way the Dawnseeker stalks and hunts it’s prey. However when you see the alien it (thankfully) looks very little like the Predator and more like something from a 1970’s episode of Dr. Who, all squishy and spongey so it pays to not look too closely at it. The soundtrack by Julian Beeston is effective and it has quite a detailed and intricate title sequence. The rest of it I’m afraid is very hard to follow, plagued by continuity errors with sporadic and nonsensical dialogue. Not to mention recycled plot lines and some of the weirdest, unexplained make up and wardrobe changes I’ve witnessed recently. So once again it’s not great but he has done worse, I still will not be recommending any of his movies I have seen to anyone.

Review by Sarah Budd

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