Day #191: The Faculty (1998)

Synopsis:

[From IMDb:] Students suspect that their teachers are aliens after bizarre occurrences.

My take:

What would you say if I were to propose that The Faculty is a high concept/low execution movie?

Okay, well, first of all, that reaction of yours was rude. Secondly: hear me out.

High concept: It’s a story about the struggle to maintain individuality in the face of the comfort of uniformity, with metafictional ties to a long tradition of sci-fi texts that have dealt with similar topics. The main group of kids are [FYI: spoilers ahead] taken over/targeted by the aliens in an order that reflects their distance from the social ideal, with the lowest on the pecking order ultimately proving to be the hero that was needed; and he was able to be the hero exactly because he made the conscious decision not just to survive, but to maintain the existing social order (“I’d rather be frightened”) when faced with the choice of giving in and losing his individuality.

Then, the “one month later” epilogue contradicts this entire message in a shocking twist, by showing that the ‘reward’ for their struggle was the very uniformity that they had fought against! The aliens had won after all.

Either that, or the ending was just done that way because happy endings are expected. Y’know, whatevs.

As for the “low execution” part of my equation, well…I might actually take a step back on that point. The Faculty might be a bit silly, but it’s also a fun movie. Ending aside, nothing about it is particularly bad. The acting is decent (and I never realised how many familiar faces there were in the cast before!), the story is predictable but serviceable, and there’s some cool looking alien-related stuff.

It’s not exactly a timeless classic but, hey, I enjoyed watching it again!

Trivia: Apparently Josh Hartnett cut his own hair.

I can believe it.

I can believe it.

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