Inalienable DVD Review: Reproductive Racial Profiling From Outer Space

While female fertility issues have made enormous scientific strides lately, what with hordes of artificially induced celeb twins, geriatric pregnancies and even Octomom too, men appear to be anxious to get into the act as well. With animal cloning in full swing and the debut of a pregnant male transsexual this past year, Hollywood is beginning to play catchup. And it seems to be all about metaphorically black and blue.

First, there was District 9, and its crazed South African news anchor giving birth to a racially profiled extraterrestrial species, though he did complain loudly that no, he did not have sex with that alien. Then Avatar’s paraplegic sci-fi superhero gone native, gives birth to himself, cloned in blue and in full insurrection mode with similarly blue space warriors, against the US military industrial complex. And while vintage futuristic fare, fixated as always on humankind’s greatest fears and desires, was primarily concerned with a very different color – red – related to communist witchhunts back then, today’s obsession du jour seems to be racial intolerance. Enter Inalienable.

Richard Hatch is Eric Norris in Inalienable, directed by Robert Dyke, a widower scientist researching none too successfully, an experimental AIDS cure in monkeys. At the same time, Norris is emotionally overwhelmed with a combination of grief and guilt over the death of his son and ex-wife in a car accident while he was driving. But when a meteor crashes nearby and he’s mysteriously impregnated with a peculiarly deformed alien fetus, once past his feeling of terror, Norris bonds with the creature, as his, well, paternal instinct kicks in. And to such an extreme that he does fierce battle with the FBI and scientific establishment, the latter presided over by his cranky when not creepy boss (science fiction legend Walter Koenig). And while hottie research assistant Crystal (Marina Sirtis) finds herself to her dismay, playing second fiddle to the undocumented tot.

Alternately scary and kooky, Inalienable boasts a procession of sci-fi icons in both supporting and cameo roles, and gets into philosophical mode when touching symbolically on timely topics like toleration of differences and compassion towards foreigners, even if they are aliens. While Erik Avari does radically cosmic comic relief as a weirdly eloquent lawyer defending the civil rights of the partially human offspring, when not presiding over a rather strange but genius organization called The Society For Alternative Explanations. Where do you sign up.

Anchor Bay Entertainment


3 stars

DVD Features; Outtake; Trailer.

Prairie Miller is a New York multimedia journalist online, in print and radio, who reviews movies and conducts in-depth interviews. She can also be heard on WBAI/Pacifica National Radio Network’s Arts Express.