Cosmic Sin Review: Utter sci-fi trash
Although it features two iconic action leads, one with a legendary legacy and another that’s quickly rising, Cosmic Sin is barely a comprehendible movie.
It’s honestly hard to even describe the plot of this movie because it’s so all over the place and narratively broken that it’s hard to say that it even has a plot at all. Things start out on a relatively normal note with the film taking viewers in a very distant future where Earth makes first contact with a seemingly hostile alien race, but then the film completely goes off the rails in a multitude of ways. The story direction is all over the place as characters just roll in and out of the film with no purpose. The only motivations or mindset these characters have is bloodshed making them all bland killing machines. New, unnecessary story elements, characters, and narrative direction are confusingly slapped together to create a viewing mess. Honestly, there’re multiple times in this movie where you question what the hell is even happening, and the performances give off this same vibe of confusion.
It’s unfortunate to have the likes of Bruce Willis and Frank Grillo, two multi-generational action titans, be in such an actionless bore like this. Although they’re the film’s top-billed names, they’re barely in the movie since the film never seems to have a main character as it just rapidly shifts between characters. Thus, it’s impossible to gain even the slightest grasp on who anyone really is or for anyone to deliver a performance that’s remotely remarkable. Frankly, no one looks like they want to be there, and they deliver careless performances that are about as generic as the writing. Nearly every line is some type of sci-fi military lingo or action line that’s been done to death and just about every performance gives off this tiresome “ugh” that reflects how lifeless the dialogue really is.
In terms of world-building and getting you invested into the film’s futuristic sci-fi lore, Cosmic Sin totally drops the ball. It has this huge information text slate dump in the first moments of the film that’s supposed to give you insights as to how things got to this point, but it never goes deeper into it. Instead of delving more into its world or these aliens and their history, everyone just talks about the Q-Bomb incident with Willis’ Ford and whether they like him or not. All the attention seems to be overly focused on one character who’s barely likeable even with Willis there and literally everything else goes to the wayside. Other characters that are introduced later into the film aren’t given proper introductions so they’re just extra bodies in the frame. Locations have no value other than a place for characters to meet up from time to time. The editing is the most horrific element though as it makes the narrative super choppy and characters just end up from point to point without showing us how they got there or just disappear from the film entirely.
Based on what you’ve heard so far, you can easily imagine that the visuals and action are just as bad. There’s such little action that this ends up being one of the most boring sci-fi action flicks in recent time. However, it makes sense when you see some of the ugly visuals and cheap ways that the film tries to get around having memorable action/horror moments in order to save a dollar. The visual effects look terrible and the space suits they wear look cheap and unremarkable. The worst thing with Cosmic Sin though is its tone as it takes itself far too seriously to make its goofy humor or characters work. There were so many moments where I just wished the film would lean heavier into being loose or goofy rather than overly serious so it could be a little more fun to watch. Instead, the film tries to carry this tough tone that isn’t as cool as it wants to be or remotely enjoyable to watch.
Cosmic Sin is the pinnacle of horrific sci-fi trash, but that doesn’t mean it’s remotely fun to watch. It’s not one of those films that’s “so bad, it’s good.” It’s just straight up bad and doesn’t need to be on anyone’s watchlist – ever.