By and large, I liked the Nicole Kidman-Daniel Craig sci-fi thriller The Invasion, a modern-day remake of the B movie, Invasion of the Body Snatchers. However, it appears I may be the only one.
In The Invasion, Kidman plays Carol Bennell, a Washington, D.C. psychiatrist who must try to find and save her son Oliver (Jackson Bond) when a virus-like alien life-form invades the country after hitching a ride on a returning NASA shuttle. It spreads throughout the country like an epidemic, turning unsuspecting (and suspecting) Americans into emotionless, zombie-like doppelgangers of themselves while they sleep, and threatening to take over the human race.
Based on Jack Finney's 1955 novel The Body Snatchers, this story has already been adapted to film twice before--in 1956 and 1978--and I suspect that the bulk of the criticism of The Invasion stems from the inevitable comparison to these previous versions. However, having neither seen these movies, nor read the book, I come to The Invasion without preconceived notions of what it should be, which likely accounts for my arguably more-pleasant-than-the-norm reaction.
The thing about Finney's story is that, like The Crucible, it easily lends itself to metaphorical interpretation of the social ills of any given era. Whereas the previous incarnations commented on the Red Scare and the Vietnam War, The Invasion seeks to make connections between the current trend of disease pandemic scares, the War in Iraq, and the unpopularity of the current political administration. It does so, however, by using timely news footage and issues as a back drop to the story without drawing any real allegories with the main story. If you are looking for this to be a message movie about the dangers of the sheep-like tendencies inherent in human nature and the importance of free thought, it is true that you will likely be disappointed.
Taken as a more popcorn-y sci-fi flick with a cool look, a tense, creepy feel, and uncommonly handsome leads giving above-average-for-the-genre performances, however, The Invasion is perfectly entertaining. Did I think it was gross that the disease was transmitted basically by vomiting on each other? Yeah. Do I wonder what it is that makes Nicole Kidman seem to go for movies that warn against the perils of life without emotions (i.e., The Stepford Wives)? Absolutely. But that doesn't change the fact that taken by itself, I thought The Invasion was fairly interesting, a little scary, and just as good as anything else that's out there.