How to Ruin Your Own Movie: Dead Space: Aftermath Edition

I don't know why I'm surprised that two films in the same series would use the same terrible device, but here we are, ruining things again. At first, I thought the film was going to be clever, and show the actual 'Aftermath' of a Dead Space incident, seeing as things open with characters gathered in the heart of a spaceship, having recently resolved whatever it is their problem was.

At fist it seems like the movie is going to be about what happens next to all of these people - but that quickly gets tossed aside in favor of a structure where an interrogator asks them what happened in the plot of the film, and each one tells their own part of the story (each rendered in a different art style).

Which wouldn't be terrible except for two things:

1: We already know what happened in the story - everyone on the ship except for the four of them were killed, but they managed to destroy a thing that saved the day. This means that everything they do feels a little pointless, and every death a fait accomplit.

2: The 'everyone has a part of the story' thing is completely misused, and has no real value. The main action of the film features all four characters running around as a group, trying to accomplish goals. As a result, all four of them know everything that happened on the ship. They don't have their own 'parts' of the story, and there's no reason each one can't tell the whole thing, yet the movie is parceled out into four sections in chronological order for no good reason. Well, other than to have the framing device eat up running time.

That's the real kicker which makes the whole film so frustrating. The 'after the end' framing device removes all drama and surprise from the film, and replaces it with absolutely nothing. It's not like we need to be told that a 'rescue' from a situation like this isn't going to turn out well - all you have to do is watch Alien 3 - the guys from the corporation are never there to help. What makes the whole thing worse is that at the end of the very first flashback the villains lay it all out on the line - all they need are people who have touched the marker, everyone else is expendable. Since either fate is essentially death, just twenty minutes into the movie the last surprise has been sprung, and we can commence ignoring the thing.

Look, I know Palmiotti and Grey are overly fond of this device. To a fault. To like, seven faults. That doesn't mean that people working on the sequel to something they wrote have to use that same device. It didn't work there, why did you think it was going to work here?

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