WARNING: This review may contain spoilers.
Jupiter Ascending (J.A.) has all the trademark calling cards for a stock-standard sci-fi adventure, but with the Wachowskis at the helm, could it be the next Matrix?
Directors: Andy Wachowski, Lana Wachowski
Writers: Andy Wachowski, Lana Wachowski
Stars: Mila Kunis, Channing Tatum, Eddie Redmaine, Sean Bean
IMDB Synopsis: In a bright and colorful future, a young destitute caretaker gets targeted by the ruthless son of a powerful family, who lives on a planet in need of a new heir, so she travels with a genetically engineered warrior to the planet in order to stop his tyrant reign.
This is quite possibly the most inaccurate and incoherent description of a film in the past few years. J.A. is a horrendous cinderella story. We follow Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis) - named so by her space-infatuated father who dies tragically in a robbery (or police raid?). She works as a cleaner for some rich family, unbeknownst to her that she is actually space-royalty. She gets hunted by three potential space-heirs who seek the inheritance of Earth; either for personal glory, fortune or the ever elusive commodity ‘time’. Why Earth? Because it’s a human-farm and humans have such tremendous space-market value! Absorb one today!
Conceptually the Wachowskis have an alluring imagination. Their potent combination of futuristic bio-tech designs and vivid sci-fi-fantasy universes are always pleasing to the eye. So too is their ability to direct engaging and offbeat action sequences. But this film showed some serious flaws in their capabilities as writers. So bad you can see actors struggling with their dialogue (often so poor, it’s laughable). Some moments are so cringe-worthy it demands turning away from the screen to avoid being doubly assaulted. Performances are flatter than Saturn (look that one up). Almost every supporting cast member is woeful. Our leading lady (Kunis) did extremely well at taking ‘counter girl’ from Forgetting Sarah Marshall into space. Recent Academy Award winner Eddie Redmayne, was terrible. His inability to connect to dialogue and his emotional deluge was excruciating to watch. Channing Tatum (Caine Wise) and Sean Bean (Stinger Apini) were the only notable performances (sort of).
The story of Jupiter Ascending is not without some conceptual merit. The backbone has strength, but the vertebrae is out of alignment and the flesh isn’t worth harvesting. Michael Giacchino is a talented composer but the union between film and score was marred by over-emphasised triumph and grandiose. On top of all this excellence (!) was a flimsy love interest between Jupiter and her renegade protector, Caine (Tatum). It's better to leave it at that.
J.A. is not worth seeing at the cinema. And it's not an encouraging film for young people (particularly young women). There's no heroic character arc for Jupiter at all. She's merely helpless against the power and control of others at almost every turn. Now where's the blue pill?
Ray @ Lovesac
RATING: Gamesac + Tubesac
[Ratings are based out of our 7 sizes of Lovesac: Kidsac, Gamesac, Playersac, Pillowsac, Moviesac, Supersac, BigOne. Accessories are used as markers in between sizes/ratings: Tubesac 1/4, Cubesac 1/2, Minisac 3/4. The bigger the Lovesac - the more we love the film.]