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Thread: After Earth

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    Wow, whoever took over Roger Ebert's website gave the movie 3 1/2 stars out of 4.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Ü™ View Post
    Wow, whoever took over Roger Ebert's website gave the movie 3 1/2 stars out of 4.
    ROFL!!!!!! Well, actually, there's a revolving panel of reviewers.

    Matt Zoller Seitz. 'TV critic for New York Magazine and Vulture.com and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in criticism.' He writes well.

    I skimmed the review, and it sounds like the themes and ideas of the movie resonated more with him (he shares the values he could perceive within the story); he didn't focus on the actual craftsmanship and presentation like many others did. He also seemed to have different standards for the graphics, I think he's the only one I've seen so far who thought they were wonderful.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    Now I'm curious. What's so bad about Highlander 2?
    The wikipedia article gives you a pretty good general synopsis that contains much of the ridiculous ideas. The synopsis of course can't treat you to the horrible direction and acting, but film's concepts alone are astonishingly stupid.

    Notable scenes include a horrible fight between McLeod and two hovering, cackling assassins with a horrible sense of style, and a scene where the bad guy somehow makes a train go super first which in turns some how flings a lot of passengers around and kills them.
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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    Now You See Me lost the coin toss, I'm waiting for this turd to start. And after the credits role on this steaming pile of turd, Will Smith should go back to making comedies again. Intentional comedies, I mean.

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    Actually wasn't that bad. Still within the Syfy Channel original movie territory rather than an A-grade summer blockbuster, but still entirely watchable...except for some frighteningly bad CGI, including one horrible shot of a CG Jaden Smith stunt double jumping like a cartoon character, as well as cheap-ass green screen shots that make a weatherman's background graphics seem convincing. But unlike Star Trek Into Darkness, nothing about this movie genuinely pissed me off.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Ü™ View Post
    Actually wasn't that bad. Still within the Syfy Channel original movie territory rather than an A-grade summer blockbuster, but still entirely watchable...except for some frighteningly bad CGI, including one horrible shot of a CG Jaden Smith stunt double jumping like a cartoon character, as well as cheap-ass green screen shots that make a weatherman's background graphics seem convincing. But unlike Star Trek Into Darkness, nothing about this movie genuinely pissed me off.
    Well, there was nothing of precedent for it to conflict with or capitalize directly on.

    Still, thanks for the feedback. I'm still trying to figure out how much of the critical bitching stems from (1) the involvement of the Director Not To be Named, and (2) Will Smith cast against type.

    I don't really have the money right now to justify seeing it in the theater, but probably Redbox. I have trouble watching SyFy channel movies, unfortunately; they just annoy me despite the sometimes interesting blurbs/trailers.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Well, there was nothing of precedent for it to conflict with or capitalize directly on.

    Still, thanks for the feedback. I'm still trying to figure out how much of the critical bitching stems from (1) the involvement of the Director Not To be Named, and (2) Will Smith cast against type.

    I don't really have the money right now to justify seeing it in the theater, but probably Redbox. I have trouble watching SyFy channel movies, unfortunately; they just annoy me despite the sometimes interesting blurbs/trailers.
    Will Smith didn't really do much in the movie, and he tends to be serious in the wrong movies. The movie was mostly trying to make Jaden Smith into an action hero or something, but he seems entirely too wimpy.

    And keep in mind, I'm comparing this movie to The Happening, The Last Airbender, and yes, I also hated The Village. I would rank After Earth above those three, but we're still a long way from Unbreakable. Thankfully, however, M. Night didn't seem to try hammering in any kind of environmental message like I feared, which I guess you could consider a twist of sorts. I guess fear isn't real after all.

    But looking back at his career, I thought the only redeeming quality of The Last Airbender were the vfx, except for the ones that were clearly meant to be a 3D gimmick, and it was a nice-looking movie. But it had some terrible acting and writing. On the other hand, I remember some "journalists" complaining about racism. In this case, it was the villains having darker skin color. Number 1, isn't that typical of nearly all movies? Number 2, isn't the director Indian? I was reading an article about the most offensive characters in movies, and naturally, Watto and Jar Jar Binks show up, but I think the persons making these associations are the ones who are racist and exploiting stereotypes. If Watto is "supposed" to be a Jew and Jar Jar is "supposed" to be a Rastafarian (and correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't the actor playing Jar Jar a black guy basing his performance on his Caribbean grandmother?), then why isn't Yoda "supposed" to be the wise Chinese guy? Point being, I think the allegations of racism in the movies are completely unfair and hypocritical, but for some reason, I notice this tendency to exploit racism when the rest of the movie is poorly received.

    Then we have The Happening, which was just strange and very, very pretentious. That's really all I have to say. I find it hard to believe that this movie was even trying to be a horror movie, because every "horror" element seemed to be played for laughs. I suppose that certain elements could've been chilling, but it was all just totally run into the ground.

    I actually didn't think Lady in the Water was that bad, except for the movie critic character, which was clearly M. Night's unsubtle jab at the critics' voices of his previous work (and frankly, Roland Emmerich's Godzilla was more clever at this). I did like the premise, but it became plainly obvious that Shyamalan was trying too hard to be quirky with his filmmaking style. Though to be fair, this already began with...

    ...The Village, where all of it just seemed too go to his head, whereas this movie's successor tried too hard with its overall sense of style, this one tried way too hard with the twist. In this case, it was a gimmick that just pissed me off.

    Signs gets a lot of unfair criticism. I enjoyed it. I thought that the whole epic premise played at a small scale was effective, although the whole religious angle was over-the-top. Still, I think what people criticize the movie for is unjust, like how the aliens don't like water and yet land on a planet covered with water. Isn't it conceivable that the aliens didn't know what that liquid substance was until they came into contact with it? The aliens' technology is not explained at all, so who the hell knows? I will admit that their inability to open doors was a little bizarre, but I didn't think it was that big of a deal.

    Unbreakable was his best movie, and I have very few complaints about it. I'd go as far as consider it a masterpiece. Why? Well, frankly, I'm getting tired of writing, so...next movie.

    The Sixth Sense was good the first time I saw it, but it lost its appeal rather quickly. And yes, I was an avid watcher of Are You Afraid of the Dark? and yes, I was thinking about that particular episode that M. Night later revealed to be his inspiration. But I thought it was a well-told spin on that story. But it's nowhere near as thrilling after multiple views, Unbreakable, on the other hand, is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    ROFL!!!!!! Well, actually, there's a revolving panel of reviewers.

    Matt Zoller Seitz. 'TV critic for New York Magazine and Vulture.com and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in criticism.' He writes well.

    I skimmed the review, and it sounds like the themes and ideas of the movie resonated more with him (he shares the values he could perceive within the story); he didn't focus on the actual craftsmanship and presentation like many others did. He also seemed to have different standards for the graphics, I think he's the only one I've seen so far who thought they were wonderful.
    Laughing -- I think Seitz only gave ST2 a 2.5/4, if that.

    Pretty funny he panned ST for AE.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Okay. I'm a fair reviewer.

    My son and I wanted to hit the dollar theater tonight, and the only palatable offering was After Earth, so we watched it. (He's also been on a Shyamalan kick, he only has The Happening yet to watch.)

    Both of us thought this movie received an unfair shake by the bulk of the critics. No, it's not a top star movie, but it also wasn't nearly as bad as the reviewers trashed it to be. Yes the opening was pretty weak; yes, there's a problem with accents (the actors try to employ a stupid one, but each does it differently and inconsistently, until they give up); yes, the movie seems kind of sparsely populated even during the times multiple humans exist.

    I think the writer(s) could be blamed for picking two character types that don't communicate well on film, making it hard to act. But the characters were valid -- a boy who blames himself for his sister's death, is trying to prove to himself and his dad he is not a coward, and who is still young so he doesn't articulate himself well. Meanwhile, a father who is all business, doesn't articulate emotions well, doesn't know how to interact with his son -- by premise the guy is able to "ghost" which means suppressing all fear, but did anyone bother to think that the ability to ignore such emotions might also come with some horrible side effects, such as not feeling and responding to the natural emotional current of a good relationship? I didn't have an issue with the characters as characters, the issue is that they're hard to play on the big screen especially when they aren't even in the same room together. Maybe Anthony Hopkins and Clint Eastwood -- mainly because of their own personalities -- are masters at those types of characters, but I'm not sure what else Will Smith could have done with the role. And Jaden, while not a genius of his generation, did well enough in his role that I could empathize with him.

    Maybe that is what I am getting at here. Despite the flaws of the movie, I could still track and empathize with the characters, I understood where they were coming from, the threats were real enough, and I felt some pathos stirring. A bad movie, to me, is an inert movie where none of that happens; and this movie was not a bad movie. I'd probably give it a B-.

    There were some trademarks movies by Shyamalan as well, in terms of sacrifices made by characters (not all of them human) out of sentiment for other characters. One I found unexpectedly touching. There's also a half-decent dream sequence between Kitai and his movie sib.

    Anyway, since my son has seen almost all of Shyamalan's movies, he can definitely say it's not close to the worst. (That distinction belongs either to Last airbender or Lady in the WAter.) I think the critics can be pack animals at times, and this seems to be one of those situations.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    I thought it had some . . . plot holes for lack of a better word, but I enjoyed it.



    I was hoping for cooler scary animals.

    I *hated* Lady in the Water and liked Unbreakable, but don't think I've seen the other movies by this director listed in this thread.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
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