Nothing good can come from an introspective and seemingly content Nicolas Cage muttering that he’s finally “living the dream,” especially in a film directed by beleaguered filmmaker Richard Stanley and inspired by a classic short by H.P. Lovecraft. Such is the general shape of Stanley’s wild return to feature filmmaking, “Color Out of Space,” which follows Cage and company as they attempt a quiet life in the country, only to be hit (literally and figuratively) by a malevolent alien organism that materializes as vivid color.
Per the film’s intriguingly slight official synopsis, “after a meteorite lands in the front yard of their farm, Nathan Gardner and his family find themselves battling a mutant extraterrestrial organism as it infects their minds and bodies, transforming their quiet rural life into a technicolor nightmare.” The film also stars Joely Richardson as Nathan’s wife, along with Madeleine Arthur, Brendan Meyer, Julian Hilliard, Elliot Knight, Q’Orianka Kilcher, and Tommy Chong.
Stanley and co-writer Scarlett Amaris have updated and tweaked the seminal story from Lovecraft, which has previously inspired such big screen chillers as “The Tommyknockers,” “Annihilation,” and “The Curse,” though this iteration is more faithful to the creepy material at hand. A passion project for Stanley (who knows better than most the value and terror of such ideas), the film has been in the works since 2013, though Cage’s casting in 2018 finally put it on the fast track to being made.
And what a fit for Cage, king of the cinematic freakout and a bonafide horror buff to boot, as he digs into the role of the terrorized Nathan, a man literally undone by color (and, yes, of course, the weirdo power of a space rock that infects his home, wife, children, flora, and fauna, twisting them into freakish beings). If you’ve ever wanted to see Cage convince himself “it’s just a color” when all signs point to, no, this so much more than that, “Color Out of Space” is poised to be the cinematic event of next year.
Check out the first trailer for “Color Out of Space” below. RLJ Entertainment will release the film in theaters on Friday, January 24, 2020.