Reality Entertainment brings another interesting chapter in the long discussion of whether the Loch Ness exists and then expounds upon that to the connection of UFOs, i.e. the Alien Encounter as in the title of the film. This film, from director and writer Philip Gardiner (Dead Walkers: Rise of the 4th Reich ), leans to side of a documentary than a reenactment of the events, and brings into the realm, past history, which refreshes the legend and actually hints to both the skeptics and Christian Propaganda. Although, the film starts recalling the history of the sightings, from the 7th century to more modern day, it is not without a mixture of a few ridiculous pictures not endorsed by Philip nor Reality, but ideally from individuals seeking their own instant fame with made-up stories and hoaxes. However, this great mystery of Loch Ness fascinates many especially in enthusiastic the cryptozoology field, just like those of the Jersey Devil, Bigfoot, and Yeti, nevertheless this creature without a doubt is the most notable on the sea creatures, and likely has the many documentaries and specials broadcasted on one topic. Many research teams, from the Discovery Channel to National Geographic to military operations, aside many private individuals spent millions on the Loch Ness, using scan solar, submersibles (ROVs) to just patrolling the coast using infrared cameras and night visions, all to no avail. Nessie, as the locals in the film called the illusive creature, made the last sighting 2011, yet a recent stir on the internet show that App of the lake, show a large object in the lake moving, but it was debunked quickly as image manipulated the contrast to have a vessel blend into the background.
Philip does an excellent job of bringing a quality documentary with a runtime over 60-minutes, on this tiresome story, however he does rehash information that many present often, such as the famous Surgeon’s Photograph of 1934, an iconic image of Nessie, the first photo and only of the head and neck, many now dismiss it as a hoax; too. His film also, uses the post-production effectively combining layered visual effects filling the scenic shots, yet one wonders if that is because of the lacking of storytelling or lack of new information of surrounding this tourist attraction in Britain’s Loch Ness. As with many documentaries, the budgets make for positive footage, and many filmmakers find the production value, a tad crimped for their style, hence another reason to use the vast array of visuals. However, the film does contain the noted and Guinness Book Record Holder in Nessie-hunting Steve Feltham, who dismisses possible evolutionary explanations, or other species such as catfish or eels, hinting the bleakness of Loch’s 754 foot depth, the over 20-miles long and the possibility of hidden underwater caves.
Many Nessie theories are touched on within the film, and under a fine narration of Karl Brown, and starts with the first one, and perhaps the creation of the myth, with the 7th century when (now) Saint Columba, a monk. The monk used the power of prayer to protect a friend, in front of locals, with the sight of the creature to have it swim away. The story like many others throughout history used to propel the Christian faith, and keep the uneducated locals and villages blinded with great stories and the blessed power of the church. These stories, extremely commonplace scatter themselves across the pages of history, usage gothic tales of vampirism to werewolves to keep the townsfolk respect for the existence of the churches, and dedicated with their donations.
The final portion of Gardiner’s film shows the “alien encounter” yet becomes very muddled, as the lack of convincing evidence finds itself lacking any creditable connection to aliens and UFOs. This theory finds itself at the top of the list of the weirdest explanations of understanding Loch Ness. A scientist, who refused on camera testimony, hence portrayed by actor Jack Burrows, states while he researched the creature, he witnessed a UFO over the Loch Ness and Nessie seemed to communicated with the ship. Mmmm… sounds like something from Star Trek’s IV: The Voyage Home, many fans and Trekkies recall an alien probe communicates with Humpback whales, that science-fiction film made more sense that this theory. His research could not provide any photos, videos, or sound of the event, leaving very suspect of this eyewitness account, but wait there’s more, the UFO took the Nessie board it and vanished.
Overall, the “alien encounter” makes little sense, and rather a title of Paranormal Activities at the Loch Ness would have more attention, as that is another theory to Nessie existence, yet the film provides entertainment, and some educational reinforcement that brings a glimmer of new light to this aging topic.
This review was originally published in June 2014 on Rogue Cinema’s website which is now more.
IMDb Rating: 4.4/10
Baron’s Rating: 4.0/10