By Matt Singer | Criticwire June 27, 2013 at 12:46PM
More and more films premiere on Video on Demand -- if they don't simply bypass a theatrical release altogether. Because VOD reviews are often scarce and hard to find, Criticwire created VODetails, a recurring column to help you figure out whether a new VOD release is worth your hard-earned dollar. This time we're looking at "Europa Report," a sci-fi found footage movie -- not a critical essay on a Lars von Trier movie.
Director: Sebastian Cordero
Cast: Sharlto Copley, Embeth Davidtz, Michael Nyqvist
Criticwire Average: B+ (3 critics)
Synopsis: "'Europa Report' follows a contemporary mission to Jupiter’s moon Europa to investigate the possible existence of alien life within our solar system. When unmanned probes suggest that a hidden ocean could exist underneath Europa’s icy surface and may contain single-celled life, Europa Ventures, a privately funded space exploration company, sends six of the best astronauts from around the world to confirm the data and explore the revolutionary discoveries that may lie in the Europan ocean. After a near-catastrophic technical failure that leads to loss of communication with Earth and the tragic death of a crewmember, the surviving astronauts must overcome the psychological and physical toll of deep space travel, and survive a discovery on Europa more profound than they had ever imagined."
"Hands down the most painstakingly accurate space movie we've seen in ages."
"Given the saturation of the found footage horror genre, Cordero's approach delivers a much shrewder alternative that goes beyond the power of suggestion by rooting its otherworldly fears in authenticity."
"The movie is filled with impressive visuals, especially for an independent film."
"A reasonably plausible and impressively controlled achievement."
"Doesn’t quite qualify as a great sci-fi film, but it is a good one with nice execution behind and in front of the camera and great production design."
"Europa Report" is now available on VOD.