The Day The Earth Stood Still
Posted 03 December 2008 - 01:45 PM
Posted 03 December 2008 - 02:55 PM
TDTESS was a tight little thriller and a perfect Cold War allegory by a great director, beautifully executed on a small budget. The remake isn't.
I won't be investing in a ticket.
Posted 03 December 2008 - 06:28 PM
Posted 04 December 2008 - 03:24 PM
On the other hand, I think Keanu Reeves looks like the right guy for playing Klaatu, and I have to admit,
Uugh This guy wouldn't be good playing a donut shop manager, one of the dullest "actors' of our time IMO, Peter sellers is rolling in his grave.
Posted 04 December 2008 - 04:40 PM
Posted 04 December 2008 - 08:00 PM
The original was a brilliant Christ allegory and all about peace & loving your fellow man. The trailer for the new film has lots of stuff blowin' up real good. 'nuff said.
Yeah the new one looks real dull just what we need right now another the world blows up movie!
Posted 09 December 2008 - 08:47 PM
This time around, looks like it's a cautionary tale about mismanagement of the planet. I hope they don't thump me in the face with the theme throughout the whole movie. I mean, I anticipate the required footage of polluted trash dumps, leaking radioactive barrels, and some nice coal stacks billowing toxicity into the atmosphere. As long as stuff blows up and the dialogue isn't terrible, that's cool.
And oddly enough, I think Keanu Reeves is the right actor for the part. He's sort of . . . out of tune . . . or something. I buy him as an alien in a human body. If you don't think so, I'm curious: Who'd be better for the part?
Posted 10 December 2008 - 06:25 AM
I see this movie as being exactly like War of the Worlds:
I liked the remake, but no way did it come close to the original. How the heck could it? It's a different time. But I enjoyed it--from my couch. But I'm glad I didn't pay to see it.
What remake is coming next? Gone With The Wind?
Some things just shouldn't be touched.
Posted 14 December 2008 - 02:16 PM
I have to agree with Ebert on this one. In his review, he says: "All this is presented in an expensive, good-looking film that is well-made by Scott Derrickson, but to no avail." The first 15 minutes of this film raised my expectations. Mostly it was footage that we've all seen in the previews and trailers. There was a nifty prologue that added a new element to the story. That's always a good sign; it leads one to (perhaps incorrectly) believe that the filmmaker's are being thoughtful about what they reveal before opening day.
So what about the rest of it?
Eh. It just wasn't that engaging. The melodrama didn't connect. The amount of dialogue was sparse, even for a science fiction movie. There just wasn't that much to the story that we hadn't predicted. There was only one or two 'money-shot' special effects that we hadn't seen in the trailers. I just didn't buy that an advanced alien civilization would make a planetary judgement call based on the behavior of one kid. Maybe it's just because the story tried to make the argument that large groups of people can willingly change their behavior, to benefit the greater good while enduring personal disadvantage, and I'm right there with the aliens, thinking, "No we won't. Not unless we're forced to at the business end of a gun." Individuals will make sacrifices, and we call them heroes, but asking most people to make sacrifices is futile. (Or I'd be driving an electric hover car right now, no?)
Anyway, there was just too much about the story that I couldn't engage with. Also, the pace was glacial. The visual effects for the sphere were very nice, but did we really need a 25 second pan across the thing, with surging music? Five different times during the film? Really? Five times!?
Also, on a mildly funny note, there were so many product placements in this film that they became a distraction. One scene: the LG phone plops out of her purse onto the bed with the logo positioned just so, immediately followed by a close-up of Citizen watch to get the time. Bang!Bang! Oi.
At one point in the film, after I had given up on it, Helen Bensen holds her son, they're both crying, and he says "I'm sorry..." and she says "I'm sorry....." I just couldn't help myself. I broke my normally iron-clad theater etiquette and said, "We're all sorry." I got a few laughs.
Yesterday I went out and bought the original version on DVD and watched it, along with the surprisingly good special feature on Robert Wise, which sort of made up for the experience.
From now on I'll just keep my expectations to myself.
*Not the original original script, the original script for the remake. Hmm. Maybe there should be a name for that, something that doesn't use the word "original". The 'remake greenlit script'? But I digress.
Posted 14 December 2008 - 07:47 PM
I would like to volunteer that this is a perfect, perfect example of transference failure. Who the f*** was this movie about? What I mean is: The movie must be about somebody. We must have someone's shoes to walk in. Unfortunately, we were obliged to follow along with three characters, none of which we could commit to because the writer and director made us care about two characters too many. Therefore, there was insufficient character dynamic or opportunity for character loyalty from us. Frankly, I couldn't have cared what happened to any of them. If you don't care about anyone in the movie, there's nothing grand enough to carry you through the movie.
This was such a fundamental, story teller's blunder. How much did they spend on it?
Posted 30 December 2008 - 05:14 PM
Keannu reeves was well cast and Jennifer Connelly and Jaden Smith. All three acted their parts well.. John Cleese had a nice cameo.. The Robot looked good and that was about it.. The story could have been reworked so much better than this. I felt like the film finished to quickly and they had cut off the last twenty minutes.. There should have been a goodbye between the main characters and a resolution with the earth leaders with some indication of what we needed to do to change after all this was a film with a message that in the end didn't get delivered. Everything was just unfinished. If I was going to end this film then I would have had Klattu take jenny and the kid on board and maybe even talk to the higher alien authorities who maybe make their decision from talking to the boy who then helps in talks with the world leaders at least this would give some kind of direction to the whole thing. The original films message was simplistic and can't be copied only reworked for todays audience and this didnt do it.. My guess is to much of the budget went on Keanu and not enough to make the film..
All in all average effects with little spectacle Acting was good so was everything else just lacking in budget and compelling story.
Posted 30 December 2008 - 05:31 PM
Even "The Godfather" films are not focused completely on Michael Corleone's emotional state -- they are really tales where the family is the central character.
So I don't see a problem with having three main characters in a movie that you have to follow and care about, as opposed to one character with the other two playing subservient roles dramatically and emotionally. Audiences can care about more than one person at a time, just as they do in real life.
That said, this movie is rather unfocused about what it wants to be about and it all sort of falls apart in the last act. It was interesting up until then, sort of like that movie "Star Man" (which also had a somewhat unsatisfying ending, but it was better than this movie's climax.)
The trouble with a lot of these current blockbusters is that they often rely solely on spectacle to engage the viewer during the climax, which will tend to be emotionally unsatisfying. Or they try to have it both ways, like the last "Pirates of the Carribean" movie, with that endless action climax culminating in the emotional climax of the series -- but by the time that rolled around, you were numb from being beaten over the head with one long efx action climax after another after another...
Posted 31 December 2008 - 05:31 AM