Skip to main content

Jupiter Ascending: Quick Review

I think it is difficult sometimes to talk about the lower mid-range of movies. When I try to picture the person who would fawn over the Wachowski siblings Jupiter Ascending, consider it the best movie of all time, I draw a blank. However, for a movie in the basement in terms of critic ratings, sitting at 40% and 23% at the Meteoritic and Rotten Tomatoes respectively, I think it might not be too late to ask for a quick adjustment to the common wisdom.

"'Jupiter Ascending' Theatrical Poster" by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:%27Jupiter_Ascending%27_Theatrical_Poster.jpg#mediaviewer/File:%27Jupiter_Ascending%27_Theatrical_Poster.jpg

I want to be clear, Jupiter Ascending is not a GOOD movie. It doesn’t have particularly good acting, or script, or score. The world building is best described as needlessly ornate, and honestly a clear succinct explanation for the people, events, and creatures thrown up on the screen would have been appreciated. Alas, long gone are the days where the ideas embedded within Morpheus’ monologue could be almost as awesome as the fight scenes.

Allowing for all that, though, I’m left with a distinct impression of that movie, which is I had a good time. Now, I am a sci fi fan. I enjoy subreddits filled with as many beautiful spacecrafts and dystopian cityscapes as I can stand. So, in a sense, if there is a target audience for this movie, I am firmly situated within that auditorium. With that in mind, I had a good two hours. The action was exciting, tense, and for the most part benefited from some spectacular special effects. The big complaint I have about those scenes is that they suffer from the bloat found in many recent SFX heavy movies. There are only so many times we can see fancy space crafts zipping between Chicago sky-scrapers or pieces of burning ore facility crashing through the Great Red Spot of Jupiter.

But that’s just the thing. I can’t remember ever seeing anything quite like this movie before. It certainly shares elements with previous Wachowski movies, including inevitable comparisons with the original Matrix. But, it also has it own elegant, highly saturated style - maybe David Lynch’s Dune mixed with Lord of the Rings. I’d say this movie could be someone’s guilty Netflix pleasure except you really need a large screen and impressive sound system to get the most out of it. If it’s still showing around you, and you’ve caught up on all the Oscar bait you care to for the moment, give Jupiter Ascending a second look. It’s an interesting artifact of the almost-good, like a nonsensical dream that doesn’t quite survive the process of translation after waking up.

It is in a word, diverting.
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

"The Yuru-chara of Hector, NY" is now available!

My new story, "The Yuru-chara of Hector, NY," is now available in the current issue of the Electric Spec magazine. I'm very proud that this story is getting published at Electic Spec for the simple reason I've been reading the magazine for years, dreaming of the day I might get a story published there. Well, it's finally happened.

The story of "Yuru-chara" is pretty simple: a young girl wakes up to discover that her old virtual friend, a seven-foot-tall yellow monster named Tama Bell, has come to life. While navigating through waves of other virtual creatures released through a world-wide hack, the young heroine tries to come to grips with her responsibility to her forgotten friend and the losses inherent to growing up.

I hope that you enjoy my story and that you give the other stories a try. They're awesome!

Thank you for your continued support.

New Story Acceptance!

As mentioned last week, I do have a bit of happy news to share. I am excited to announce that my story, "The Yuru-chara of Hector, NY," will appear in the next issue of the Electric Spec Magazine at the end of the month. I am tremendously excited about this for a few reasons:
Electric Spec is simply awesome. I've been reading this magazine for awhile and never been disappointed by a single story. To have one of my stories selected is beyond humbling. I can only give an earnest thank you to Lesley L. Smith for choosing the story.I love this story dearly. It has one of my favorite protagonists and shows in the clearest way I've managed where I'd like to go with my fiction. Electric Spec also gave me the chance to reflect on this story and its meaning in a guest blog which I am sharing below. Without being spoilery, this blog expresses some of what resonates about "The Yuru-chara of Hector, NY," with me. Guest Blog at Electric SpecAt the moment, I think the…

Solemn Treasures

In Gilead, the transcendent novel by Marilynn Robinson, a 76 year old man confronts his impending mortality and the sense he cannot provide for his young son after he is gone. He had not expected to meet his son's mother in the twilight of his life, not expected to have a son. If he had, he tells his son in a lengthy letter forming the substance of Robinson's novel, he might have set something by for him. Some sort of savings or investment. It pains him to think that when he is gone, all that he can leave are a few words.

What words.

As mentioned in a previous post, I set myself on the task (is that really the right word here? maybe endeavor would be better) to read as many of the 'great novels' of this young century as I could. After reading Hillary Mantel's "Wolf Hall-" which was also fantastic by the way - I made my way to Gilead. One of the many quietly strange things about this novel is that it's actually the second novel from Robinson. Her first…