His Dark Materials
Forgot your password?
Don't have an account? Sign up here
Got more questions about news letters?
Already have an account? Log in here
and the Terms and Policies,
and to receive email from Rotten Tomatoes and Fandango.
Please enter your email address and we will email you a new password.
No user info supplied.
This movie sucked. Broke cardinal filmmaking rule, show-not-tell. What's that Joanna? That thing happened and how you're here because of this other thing? Sorry, what was that Gale? District 12 is now that? Wow, I would've liked to see that myself so my brain can emotionally invest me in whats happening. OH WELL.
People shouldn't use film to tell stories, people should use stories to tell films.
The horrors have become real, and the emotions are raw. A slavery film unafraid to show you the poison that American Slavery was. It's refreshing, and honest.
A movie where the story shines brighter then the film itself. It's a shame that there's so many scenes of boring exposition when it truly is an interesting bit of science-fiction, and in all honesty it could've been avoided. Sadly, the film's intro mirrors that of Will Smith's vanity project, "After Earth". Ender tells you in the most horribly dull way how aliens came and did stuff to us, so we did stuff back. And now we're doing more stuff.
The problems are really in the writing and acting. While Asa Butterfield is passable (which best explains almost everyone else's performance too... I'm looking at you Harrison Ford), rarely does he elevate the role, nor make it feel natural. Is Asa, as Ender, robotic and mechanical? Yes. His voice is a constant monotone, and he sports a calculating and menacing vocabulary. Perhaps the best part of his performance are in his piercing, knife-like eyes. They dart back and forth with icy precision, constantly planning ten steps ahead. Sadly, these are the superficial aspects of Asa Butterfield's performance, and they never rise to sell you a true character. In other words, he never sells you Ender. He may sport all the robotic-isms that define the character, but rarely does he express the grace that comes with machinery, and the harmony and ease of a true clockwork mind. In other words, Ender never felt natural.
If anything, Asa should've taken a page out of one of the other actor's books from his own movie, Hailee Steinfeld. Hailee Steinfeld actually played a character none too different than Ender himself in the Coen Brothers film, "True Grit". In the film, Steinfeld plays a witty and intelligent young girl named Mattie Ross. Like Ender, they both must don new dressings entering a world they are unfamiliar with, and are constantly challenged by the adults around them. The main difference is that Mattie Ross felt natural, where-as Ender hadn't.
The only true stand-out role was Ben Kingsley as the legendary Mazer Rackham. It's always great to see an older actor showcase the depth of their skill and their experience in front of a camera (Harrison Ford not really doing any of those things). Mazer is both feirce and unpredictable, a formidable adversary to Ender. He's almost playful, like an agent of madness to keep Ender on his toes. Of course he's horribly underused and has very little screentime, so we're usually stuck with old/neutered Han Solo.
But an actor is nothing without a script. While the story is good, the script suffers from being painfully faithful to the source material. Luckily you invest yourself into the story eventually, but it's at the cost of a opening act that blazes through relationships that should truly define who Ender is. And yet, we only get about 15 minutes and we're on to the next act. That's way too much information in too little time.
Although it may seem I'm taking a giant dump on this movie, there are still a lot of good things about it. The cinematography is slow and smooth for 90% of the time. Every event is like a carefully planed chess move. Whoever the DP was on this was a genius. Even when tensions are high, that smooth line of motion never breaks, and it creates a sense of grandoise when the millions of CG ships morph across the screen. It's a hard thing to make CG look impressive, and Ender's Game challenges these assumptions to new heights.
Ender's Game is definitely still worth the watch. As someone who didn't read the book, I can guarantee a slow science-fiction film that builds exciting tension and tells a satisfying story.
Couldn't get on board with this one. I hate lowering standards solely because its a comedy, but if this is all the genre has to offer there really isn't any choice. Characters are lifeless and the plot aimless. The movie lacks true style in every sense of the word. The whole time it tries to deliver you these gross physical gags with very few actual jokes constructed to be funny. It's to bad too because there were a lot of opportunities to exploit how inept celebrities would be in the apocalypse. There was room for a deeper level of comedy and they only scratched the surface of it. Instead they resort back to demon dicks and barf jokes. The improv style works with VERY FEW COMEDIES. It worked in a way for Pineapple Express (which had plenty of style to draw humor from; it's realistic, 80's violent vibe), but it does not work here. I slapped myself in the face while these actors bullshitted for the next minute. This is the End ends up being a boring, lifeless comedy made quick and cheap to profit off the market.
An hour and forty minutes of "Michael Cera" kissing people. Horribly dated 80's themes. White people problems. Perhaps the drama would be interesting if it the characters weren't infuriatingly stupid and cliche. Another half-star for Ryan Reynolds doing a tremendous job as the womanizing ex-rockstar.