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Fear the flesh of 'Under The Skin'

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Under the Skin

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A sexy alien predator (Scarlet Johannson) lures lecherous men to their deaths. Sounds familiar? Especially if you follow Science Fiction or Horror flicks. Well, "Under The Skin", new to Blu Ray and DVD this week, uses that scenario as a tipping point to explore identity and humanity in contemporary society. A parable on how we as human beings feel inside our own skins.

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First, we see her fresh from being replicated from a dead woman. Next, she takes the girl's persona as easily as she strips the corpse. Then, a quick trip to a clothing store to spice up her outfit so we can gaze at her as she sets out to capture male victims.

This nameless character is completely oblivious to the dangers of the task she is undertaking. A celestial killing machine, pursuing multiple targets singularly, enticing each to a horrifying black end. That is until an unusual encounter awakens a kinship with her prey, leading to a search of self discovery.

This enigmatic thriller is a visual treat. A sensory overload of otherworldly images. Almost indescribable. Unlike anything I've glimpsed recently on the big or small screen. Director Jonathan Glazer, the maker of "Sexy Beast" and "Birth", harnesses that part masterfully. Although to be fair, the plot is overly obtuse. Ignoring explanations doesn't keep us as viewers invested. Instead, relying mostly on the graphics and some acting to carry out the story.

Just like the directing, the acting is also handled very well. Johannson in particular, in what could be called an awfully daring role that consists of full frontal nudity and creepy atmospherics. Giving her alien a real touch of humanity with a sweet voice and a knowing glance. Have no fear because Johannson provides the anchor so this lightweight but, spectacular looking ship doesn't sail away.

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Win a Blu Ray of "Under The Skin", courtesy of Lionsgate Films! Here's how.... read, like, comment and share this review on Facebook. One winner will be announced Tomorrow night, July 15th at 9pm (e.s.t.) on the Pittsburgh Indie Movie Examiner's Facebook page!

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