[Review] Alien Abduction (MidWest WeirdFest): Experimental Short Film Takes Unique Approach Regarding an Encounter with Extraterrestrials

No matter the number of extraterrestrial contact documentaries you have watched in the past, the chances are good that you have never seen one quite like the short film Alien Abduction (2021). It hovers somewhere in the planes of the experimental, pop art, and the outré.

AV Super Sunshine and Philomena, members of the Wisconsin rock band AV Super Sunshine, tell of their alien abduction experience as images of mannequins, dolls, behind-the-scenes shots, the two narrators, and of course, aliens share screen time in this odd and constantly intriguing short. The short’s Film Freeway director biography lists AV Super Sunshine, Marcel Chagnon, and Ray Peschke sharing a director biography, with the latter also credited as cinematographer. The trio has crafted a colorful, hypnotic vision, with an engaging soundtrack from Michael Bradford.

AV Super Sunshine and Philomena’s experience shares much in common with that of other reported alien abductees, with some engrossing different details. Their narration is riveting, and the absorbing imagery adds a further unnerving quality.

Alien Abduction straddles the line between science fiction narrative and experiencer documentary. AV Super Sunshine and Philomena share their story in a bold, unique way, making the short a must-see for those interested in the curious and the weird. A full-length documentary about their experience, also titled Alien Abduction, won the Independent Spirit Award at the recent MidWest WeirdFest film festival.

Alien Abduction screened as part of MidWest WeirdFest, which took place at the Micon Cinemas Downtown in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, from March 5–7, 2021. 

3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)

Joseph Perry
Joseph Perry fell in love with horror films as a preschooler when he first saw the Gill-Man swim across the TV screen in "The Creature from The Black Lagoon" and Mothra battle Godzilla in "Godzilla Vs. The Thing.” His education in fright fare continued with TV series such as "The Twilight Zone" and "Outer Limits," along with legendary northern California horror host Bob Wilkins’ "Creature Features." His love for silver age and golden age comic books, including horror titles from Gold Key, Dell, and Marvel started around age 5.

He is a contributing writer for the "Phantom of the Movies VideoScope" and “Drive-In Asylum” print magazines and the websites Horror Fuel, Diabolique Magazine, The Scariest Things, B&S About Movies, and When It Was Cool. He is a co-host of the "Uphill Both Ways" pop culture nostalgia podcast and also writes for its website. Joseph occasionally proudly co-writes articles with his son Cohen Perry, who is a film critic in his own right.

A former northern Californian and Oregonian, Joseph has been teaching, writing, and living in South Korea since 2008.