Scott Hardie: “It was ok.”

After seeing the preposterous trailer, I feared that this was going to be very dumb, and it definitely was. The actual movie made more sense than the trailer by filling in some gaps in the premise, but all kinds of other questions arose over the course of ninety brisk minutes that the movie had no interest in answering. The only appropriate response to this kind of science-illiterate nonsense is just to accept it on its own terms, because you could write a book quibbling with how unrealistic it is. And there are other problems, like a lack of sentimentality, a refusal to obey its own logic, an incomplete third act, ugly racist and sexist undertones, deliberate cribbing from classics like Akira and 2001: A Space Odyssey, and an unavoidable sense of pointlessness to everything that happens given the terms of the plot.

But I have to give credit to Luc Besson for his usual overabundance of style, using flashy photography and special effects to dress up every scene in the movie. Even minor shots look fresh and new. I especially liked how he cleverly inserted stock footage of nature into early scenes to underline plot events from a biological perspective. This script would have turned into garbage in the hands of most hack directors, but Besson elevates the idiocy into something fun. It's not a good movie, but it's not a bad one, and it's fun enough for a summer action movie if you don't care to question it much.

− July 25, 2014 • more by Scottlog in or create an account to reply

Aaron Shurtleff: When I saw the previews, I briefly hoped it was an adaptation of Elfen Lied, but of course not. This comment adds nothing to the conversation, but I still kinda want to see this. − August 11, 2014 • more by Aaron

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