Body snatching films have a long and storied tradition in cinema. There's something about slowly discovering the person you've lived with for years is actually a stranger that cuts us deeply on a psychological level. This is the horrifying subject matter that Assimilate deals with, complete with jump scares and teens running around frightened out of their minds.
WARNING: This article contains spoilers about the ending of Assimilate and answers a bunch of popular fan questions regarding the film, like...
Where was the movie Assimilate filmed?
There's a certain small-town, insular, country-vibe that the town gives off in Assimilate that manages to feel familiar yet foreign. Which has a lot of people wondering just where it was shot.
While many believed it was produced in Georgia, which would make sense given the state's film tax incentives, and that other horror-themed pieces of entertainment, like The Walking Dead, are filmed there, it actually wasn't shot there at all.
Assimilate was filmed in Mississippi, but that doesn't mean that the producers missed out on potential filming bonuses. In an effort to promote more movie-making ventures in the state, The Mississippi Motion Picture program "provides a cash rebate on eligible expenditures and payroll, and provides sales and use tax reductions on eligible equipment rentals/purchases."
There's a slight catch though, you've got to be spending at least $50,000 on each project, and the maximum rebate you can get per film is $10 million. Assimilate definitely qualifies for this perk.
The plot of Assimilate explained:
The movie's currently available on Netflix and on-demand. Here's the official story breakdown: "While making a web-series mocking their quaint small town, three high school kids slowly discover that their relatives and neighbors are being killed and replaced by creatures that metamorphose into an exact copy of their victims. As the police and adults begin to change, and their own lives are threatened, the kids' only weapon is to covertly record the takeover and put it on the web in a desperate attempt to attract outside help."
Basically, the fate of these young kids and their small town comes down to whether or not they can covertly upload some footage to the internet. Not as climactic as traveling back in time to thwart the plans of a purple space Hitler, but it's a viable premise longtime horror fans will be very familiar with and one that's sure to mess with audiences heads,' which Assimilate goes for with its narrative.
It's a horrifying question that could make you rethink the nature of all your relationships, like who is this person you've trusted for so long? Who have they been replaced by? Someone who said they love you, is all of a sudden acting like you've never existed? The U.S.-vernacular version of Room on the Broom was taken off of Netflix and replaced by the inferior U.K.-version?! Just what in the heck is going on?! I can't take these betrayals!
The premise, again, isn't exactly a new one and the majority of reviews call the film "average," but horror fans seem to be a lot more forgiving of the movie, praising the fact that it borrows the better part of similar films.
Assimilate spoilers and ending explained:
The movie's protagonists, once they find out the "dark" secret of their town all believe that they're ground zero for a horrifying invasion of parasitic monsters that take over the human race.
Like The Crazies, there's a deadly outbreak that threatens the very fabric of our collective humanity but, unlike the Timothy Olyphant-led film, the government doesn't have a handle on the situation — it's not even close.
When our heroes "survive" and manage to upload their video to the internet, they realize that their town isn't the only one besieged by the monstrous parasites.
In fact, they learned that their assessment of the situation is entirely wrong: they aren't the first town to suffer an outbreak — they're the last.
Will there be an Assimilate 2?
The way the movie ends, it definitely suggests that a sequel is a possibility, especially when our heroes look at the comments section and see that there are other survivors.
The good thing about horror films is that the actors in them aren't so vital to the plot as the real "stars" are the monsters in the film. So this means they're relatively cheap to produce, and if the algorithm Gods smile favorably on this flick and produce good numbers for viewers, that might mean a sequel could be in order.