Let’s talk seriously for a second now: If nothing else, this film was shot by cinematographer John Toll— who also shot THE THIN RED LINE. to name just one of his achievements. The snarkier online types can make their little Twitter jokes about whatever they want, and the Razzies gonna do what the Razzies gonna do, but if you’re serious about movies, you do not get to discount a movie shot by John Toll. People who talk about movies, without ever mentioning how they look, are like people who buy comic books for the writing. They’re missing something vital. It’s not that writing isn’t important — quite the contrary! — but at the same time, these are visual media. How a movie looks is more than half the battle.
And the comic-book analogy fits another way: With so much of multiplex real estate being rented out to super-hero movies based on super-hero comics, Lana and Andy Wachowski have been making comic-book movies too, for quite a while now. It’s just that comic books don’t begin and end with super-heroes. There’s manga, there’s Moebius, there’s Jodorowsky, there’s Jack Kirby’s cosmic comics. That’s what JUPITER ASCENDING is. It’s comic-book space opera with seven thousand international flavors blended together. Sure. It’s silly and it’s absurd. But the Mighty Thor isn’t? Is this movie really too crazy? Or is it the kind of crazy some of us could use more of?
What I appreciated about JUPITER ASCENDING is what I always appreciated about STAR WARS. If the plot or the over-ripe dialogue happens to send your mind wandering, there’s always some random weirdo animal walking through the background to focus your attention on. I went into JUPITER ASCENDING excited to see the lizard people; I came out of it obsessing over the person with the elephant head. There’s a person with an elephant head in this movie! If there were a person with an elephant head in THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING or THE DANISH GIRL, I would have bothered to see THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING or THE DANISH GIRL. This is the kind of movie Eddie Redmayne needs to be making.
BUY IT HERE!
— JON ABRAMS.
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Tags: Andy Wachowski, channing tatum, Eddie Redmayne, Elephants, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, James D'Arcy, John Gaeta, John Toll, Lana and Andy Wachowski, Lana Wachowski, LIzards, Michael Giacchino, mila kunis, Monsters, sean bean, Space, Terry Gilliam, The Wachowskis