Jupiter Ascending Review: A baffling sci-fi story

 

I wasn’t exactly sure what I was about to watch as the cinema lights dimmed.  On one hand, I was worried it was going to be another one of those weird sci-fi movies which nobody understands.  But to my surprise, I actually understood the story!

Jupiter Ascending centers around a young woman named Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis) who is tired of her mundane caretaker life.  Her life gets turned upside down when the arrival of a genetically engineered ex-military hunter, Caine Wise (Channing Tatum), saves her from being murdered by the ruthless, tyrant older son, Balem Abrasax (Eddie Redmayne) – a member of the most powerful alien family in the galaxy.  Together with Caine, Jupiter finds out that she has an extraordinary inheritance that people would kill for and it was up to her to secure her future.

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“Do you think we made a mistake doing this film?” Source: Warner Bros.

The movie on a whole was okay, and I did have three issues with it.

1. Pace of the movie
For a Sci-Fi movie that needed to explain and bring people into the amazing world they’ve created; I felt that some parts of the film could use a little bit of time in the progress of story line for certain characters.  Some parts felt a bit rushed and some parts felt a bit too slow.  For example, the part where Jupiter and Caine were supposed to rescue Jupiter’s family but ended up in a 1-min kiss scene which I felt was kinda unnecessary given the situation they were in.  But, it’s Hollywood so… *shrugs*.

2. 15 mins of shirtless Channing
Okay, maybe it’s just me but this 15 minutes was kinda awkward for me.  I get that Channing has a good body and he should flaunt it.  However, it was getting pretty hard to concentrate on the amazing fight scenes when all I could think of was, ‘Isn’t he going to get cold without a shirt on?’ or ‘That dude’s like a walking beacon for attacks.’.  On a stealth rescue mission like his, isn’t it essential to have clothes on that kinda deems you invisible, as opposed to having no shirt on and practically giving away your presence?

3. The creatures called Keepers.
As a proud Doctor Who fan, I spotted a similarity in these creatures with those from DW called the Silence.  It was slightly offensive to me because it pretty much felt like blatant copying.  They look similar to the Silence and even have the same sort of effect on humans who’ve seen them – the forgetting.  As much as I’d like to think copying is a form of flattery, I wasn’t very amused with the use of DW’s monster concept.

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“I’ll shoot if you make another joke.” Source: Warner Bros.

Okay, despite these three issues, I do have to say that there were two things I felt were worth commending.

1. CGI
The CGI for this movie was mind-blowing.  It was, for me, a visual masterpiece in its own right.

2. Eddie Redmayne’s villainous performance.
Man… Somebody please give Eddie an award for being the most evil dude ever.  His expressionless face along with his ability to control his voice from the slightest whisper to the loudest freakiest shout was truly remarkable.  Each time he launched into a loud angry shout, I’d jump in my seat from the shock.  And when it came to the final scenes of the movie, his ability to look like a crazed, power-hungry and un-remorseful son was unbeatable.  It was truly a far cry from his Stephen Hawking portrayal – which could only affirm my belief that Eddie will go far.

Jupiter Ascending is definitely one that has imagination and action.  But if you are looking for a sci-fi movie that has a bit more substance, this isn’t one for you.  All in all, a good movie with the lack of an ‘oomph’ factor.

Rating:

starstarhalfstar

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