Mary Poppins Returns
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All Critics (14)
| Top Critics (4)
| Fresh (11)
| Rotten (3)
Both smugly clever and at times distastefully clueless.
An unusually creative and ambitious film of ideas that offers so much more than its forgettable title and sensationalized publicity may imply.
This ambitious teen-oriented fantasy is like taking a university philosophy course in The Twilight Zone.
A shaggy dog story but an intriguing and frequently beautiful one.
Refreshingly, Dark wants to cryptically convey an honest conversation about the fate of mankind's fragile existence. Despite some questionable unevenness, a contemplative SF thriller that dares to assume its thinking cap in surrealistic experimental mode
A heavy-handed and manipulative work of philosophical fiction featuring strong performances, but a troubled narrative.
Philosophical thriller After The Dark collapses under a nifty concept.
A thrilling combination of drama, near-science-fiction, suspense, coming-of-age agita, and intellectual exploration of ideas. Pity it derails itself.
A thought experiment about who gets picked to survive a nuclear Armageddon. Intelligent dialog about utilitarian ethical choices.
Movies that privilege ideas over action are rare enough that it's hard not to wish them well, and After the Dark gets off to a good start...But its surprise ending isn't quite as surprising as it ought to be
Doesn't end convincingly, but the opening two acts are stimulating enough to carry the viewing experience, capturing the cutthroat nature of endurance and the brutal reality of judgment in desperate times.
This is a flawed film, but it's also one that's not completely without merit.
Intriguing and artsy -- a group of students imagines various scenarios of global disasters and selecting what people would survive. A thought-provoking inquiry into human nature, society and the valuation of human lives. The acting is adequate (with several Harry Potter alumni) and nice sets, even if limited. The film is not particularly cinematic -- one imagines that the story could as easily been told as a stage play. Nevertheless, the experience is worthwhile.
A philosophy class of British students in Jakarta ponders a thought experiment: its the end of the world: who stays, who goes, who survives.
It makes for an interesting premise, interestingly played out. Typical of the Brits, understatement is the calling card and used to good effect. When there is violence its a bit shocking for that. There are no standout players, no real starring parts, and so an ensemble work and competently done.
In the end an different sci-fi answer to the ton of dystopian future scenarios floating about, one that leaves hope on the table, and I can't fault that at all.
This could have been a great film if the story didn't derail itself in the final scenes. For the most part though, this is a smart existential science fiction that manages to dramatize philosophical thought in an interesting way. A thorough examination of choices and their consequences.
I liked the premise which is what initially drove me to watch the film. With all it's arguments concerning fairness and ethics, I was ultimately left unconvinced by the film's supposed conclusion due to its unevenness and flaws. While I appreciated the dramatization of philosophical thought experiments with end of the world scenarios, it's not well-executed. I admit it was intriguing enough to get me to watch the entire film but I found myself scoffing at the curiously illogical things that happen in this movie. The acting was also something I didn't exactly loved: most of the time these kids are portrayed in a sort of self-important, know-it-all approach which is understandable but ultimately annoying (especially Petra's leisure and generally stoic attitude).
Things that are unusual or not well-explained (making them unnecessary for the plot) are why one of the students, James, is warned by Petra not to "fall asleep again" and is late to class as well as why some students are reluctant or try to refuse to participate in the thought experiment. The second scenario also makes the assumption that all the couples would become infertile because of "apocalypse shock" and that midwives are able to tell when a woman is ovulating or on her period just by looking at her. These are just some of the inconsistencies found in a movie supposedly exploring reason, logic, and other topics of philosophy. Not very smart in my opinion.
The ending is also very unsatisfying and confusing. Why should the teacher act such a very unprofessional manner towards his students because of a likely illegal affair he had with Petra, one of his students? His motivations and actions are dubious at best but it's all moot. In the end, we are inexplicably left with three scenes depicting different possible ways the teacher reacts to her rejection.
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