John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum
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Jeff Fahey and Pierce Brosnan put good performances in this science fiction film. The effects look dated but the concept is cool and seeing Jeff Fahey go into a virtual reality setting and seeing how his life had changed virtually from being a lawnmower man to a rich man with a beautiful wife. Pierce Brosnan plays the scientist well and is clearly obsessed with virtual reality.
Every review I read says something like "compared to today's standards..." which is not a fair way to rate a movie. A true critic must get in there and see the film for what it was when it was released; in this case, in 1992.
By those standards, reviews are all too negative and "Lawnmower Man" rightfully deserves a better ranking than it has. Does anyone remember what 1992 was like? Before the internet? Before cell phones?
This film was ahead of the times regarding technology, although it did fall flat when it came to imitating frankensteinian elements and other subgenre plotpoints.
The scientist here is not mad, just extremely unprofessional and careless, and given to reading too many comic books instead of journal articles. It has its ups and downs.
I saw this movie when it first came out and I loved it. However, I have just watched it again and it left me wondering WHY!??!? How could I of enjoyed something so flat in a virtual world. The acting, story-line, and direction of this movie went nowhere. It had potential, but the writing killed it!
Pierce Brosnan, what are you doing in this movie?!
It's so bad, it's comical.
For a story about a mentally handicapped man growing exponentially intelligent, the movie itself becomes increasingly stupid as it fumbles along incompetently. At bottom, the film treats virtual reality-which is really just code here for "newfangled CGI"-and, by metonymic connection, advanced intelligence itself, as a danger to humanity (and all this built upon the backs of animal testing, mind you: Others all the way down once more). Under threat are core values presumed by traditional Enlightenment values like empathy-the kindest character in the film, the titular Jobe, turned into the cruelest-and notions of autonomy-Jobe made dependent on technology, unable to care for himself. It would be easy to deconstruct this ambivalence toward digitality, technology presented as both a means of escape from the torturous confines of the brute body-Jobe, forced into manual labor, flogged by cruel authority, finally uploads his consciousness into the computer itself to become his own master-while simultaneously a mode of our own enslavement-made the center of his virtual universe, Jobe seems awfully like the genie returned to his cramped lamp, another magic object of enlightenment and bondage all at once.
More interesting, however, than these standard sci-fi tropes and computer anxieties-surprising in only how terribly they have been translated to the screen-is the utterly bonkers religious subtext of the film. In a pivotal scene, Brosnan (the mad scientist) says to Fahey (his Frankenstein-esque creation) that Christ-like delusions are a sure sign of madness-no doubt an insanity that runs throughout this strange pseudo-creature feature-to which Fahey responds aspirantly: "Cyberchrist" (and, of course, the film's original and better title was "Cybergod"). Except, having been brought up by an abusive and manipulative Catholic priest, when the slow Jobe transcends his earthly form to approach digital divinity, he seems more an antichrist than a cyberchrist, more in like with the dispassionate ruthlessness of the Old Testament than the simple kindness of the New. Nonetheless, what is so fascinating (if poorly portrayed) about the metaphor is the suggestion that in the absence of God, missing from the Church and unmentioned by science, technology and virtuality will fill the vacuum, offering up a new iGod, a Moloch of the machine. In a sense, the movie asks: If the biblical Job had had a computer or if he had been on Twitter, would he have suffered so silently, would he have become so pious, or would he have posted incessantly, joined some incel forum, and fooled himself with digital delusions of grandeur?
Pretty forgettable and schlocky. Still, really enjoy those early 90's CGI moments. Gives me a big ol nostalgia boner.
I haven't seen "The Lawnmower Man" since it came out and only remember little bits and pieces about. I remember not thinking too highly of it so I decided to revisit it. My opinion really hasn't changed. Watching it now, the special effects feel really dated but that's the least of this film's problems. With bland, uninteresting characters, a predictable story that's hard to engage with and actors who either look like they don't care or are chewing the scenery, the film is a mess. The fact it ages horribly doesn't help the matter.
Hello! My name is Rev. Ron and if you feel like checking out more of my reviews (including a more in-depth look at "The Lawnmower Man") you can visit my blog at RevRonMovies.BlogSpot.com. Also, if the mood strikes, you can follow me on Twitter (@RevRonster). Thanks!
The epitome of B movies. This could have been so much more but it was just stupid and a huge waste of time!
From the opening title card, you know that The Lawnmower Man is going to be dated. After all, it's all about the futuristic technology of VIRTUAL REALITY. However, even without the cheesy special effects, this movie is absolutely terrible. The acting is melodramatic, the story is hokey and the scares are laughable. Please, someone, delete this movie from my memory.
Ahead of its time. Unfortunately, the technology it uses was not.