Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Movie Review: Jupiter Ascending

Despite poor reviews, I went to see Jupiter Ascending this week. As per the usual, the hubs and I waited for cheap night at the local theater to take in the flick. Right off the bat, I have to say that overall, I liked it. I didn't really know what to expect given such poor to mediocre reviews. Half in the bag gave it a bad review, so I didn't have high hopes, as they're usually spot on. While I did agree with many of their criticisms, I'd say it is worth a watch, and unlike them, I would recommend it.

Let's start with everyone's favorite, some facts.

Some trailers you're likely to see in theaters: Ex Machina, Ant Man, Avengers 2.
Viewing time: approx 2 hrs
Starring: Mila Kunis, Channing Tatum, Sean Bean makes a noteworthy appearance (P.S. any appearance of Sean Bean is noteworthy)
Genre: Sci-Fi/Action with a Romance subplot

To begin with, I have to admit that I missed the Avengers 2 trailer due to making a pre-movie run too the loo. I'm pretty sad about this as the hubs said it was a great trailer. Also, I'm a sucker for Marvel films and really wished I hadn't missed it. Note to self: watch Avengers 2 trailer on You Tube later.

Now to the actual film.

Pros:

  • Females and males were equally sexualized. If anything, the men were more sexualized. The ladies (and some men) may be interested to know that there is a non-insignificant portion of the film where Channing Tatum is shirtless for no real reason related to the plot, just pure fan service. 
  • The story was different from other Sci-Fi films that have been in theaters recently, i.e. it wasn't just another regurgitation of a popular story book or film remake. 
  • It has Sean Bean in it. (SPOILER ALERT: and he doesn't die in it!)
  • The action/fight scenes were dynamic and fun to watch.
  • Cool alien ships and alien races.
  • There was a nice contrast between a semi-serious Sci-Fi story line and a goofy underdog Russian-American family. It gave the film some balance.
  • Takes place in Chicago, home of some of my fave Sci-Fi (Dresden Files, Divergent, Oprah).
Cons:
  • A little too much "damsel in distress" for my liking. Almost every event that moved the plot forward hinged on Caine (Channing Tatum) rescuing Jupiter (Mila Kunis) from some situation she got herself into.
  • Some elements of the film seemed a bit rushed. In particular, the romance between Caine and Jupiter. I just didn't get why a romance would develop between them other than they're both attractive people in the lead roles, and so they should probably become romantically involved.
  • Despite some elements seeming rushed, it could've been edited better. It definitely felt like it was 2 hours long.
My overall assessment is that I liked it, but I didn't love it. Maybe it will be one of those movies that grows on you, but I don't think so. It's worth a watch, maybe a rewatch, but not something I'll buy to watch again and again. I guess it just depends on how much you enjoy seeing Channing Tatum shirtless while kicking alien butt. 

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