TIFF Review: 'Color Out of Space' Is Nicolas Cage's Bizarre New Meme Directed by Richard Stanley

Starring Nicolas Cage, Madeleine Arthur, Tommy Chong, Elliot Knight, Joely Richardson, Brendan Meyer, Julian Hilliard, Q'orianka Kilcher
TIFF Review: 'Color Out of Space' Is Nicolas Cage's Bizarre New Meme Directed by Richard Stanley
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Nicolas Cage has become a full-blown meme, and the stranger his roles get, the more people seem to love him. Color Out of Space certainly doesn't disappoint — it's a hallucinatory free-for-all full of psychedelic strangeness and gleefully over-the-top acting.
 
This adaptation of an H.P. Lovecraft novel begins with a normal family living a mostly comfortable life out in the sticks. Nathan Gardner (Cage) is a supportive husband to his wife Theresa after her recent recovery from cancer, and they are caring parents to their three kids: Benny, a stoner who researches NASA online, Lavina, who loves performing witchy rituals, and youngster Jack (Julian Hilliard), who kinda looks like the kid from those McCain's french fry commercials from the '90s. They are also raising a herd of alpacas and have a squatter named Ezra (Tommy Chong) living on the property, so maybe they aren't totally normal.
 
Things get trippy once some sort of a glowing pink meteorite touches down in the front yard, bringing a foul smell and glowing pink lights. Soon, the laws of nature are thrown out of whack in a way that strongly resembles the last year's Annihilation. Like that film, Color Out of Space features a surreal natural phenomenon characterized by hazy pink hues, lush vegetation, time warping and disrupted communications. The cute, clever hydrologist Ward (Elliot Knight) warns them that the well water isn't safe to drink, but it soon becomes clear that the problems go a lot deeper than that.
 
Color Out of Space keeps getting more bizarre, as the family home becomes a feverish nightmare of mutated animals and queasy body horror. It's too inane to be properly scary, but it's thoroughly entertaining: Cage is characteristically out-there, and Colin Stetson's skronky score is the perfect complement to the acid trip CGI.
 
If you love Nic Cage memes and Annihilation wasn't quite weird enough for you, here's your new favourite movie.  (SpectreVision / ACE Pictures)