6 December 2005 | jackthecrazyperson
A big budget TV-movie
Joss Whedon's (creator of various TV-series including "firefly" from which this movie based upon) First attempt at directing a big-screen movie looks like a Christmas special. A Christmas special in the manner that it never comes off as a movie made for the big-screen. but rather a TV-movie. As a TV-movie, with lower production values, I might have given it a better rating. But as a Big-screen blaster, my expectations were a little higher. And thus my disappointment ran wild. I have to confess that I have never seen the original TV-series from which this is based upon, but I have heard great things about it. I don't know whether it is a requirement to do so, maybe it is, because I lost the plot somewhere along the one hour mark.
Now the movie does have a story, but it obviously isn't going to win any Peabody's. This is an Scifi-action film. Scifi, as in there are spaceships, laser guns and robots. But You will surprised to learn that there aren't that many alien races, only one actually, to be specific. Reavers, they look kinda like zombies and they eat people. There are some little scifi details that I will not reveal, but I think I mentioned the biggest ones already.
The action scenes then, which there are a number of, are rather uninspired both in land and in outer space. Basically the ground fights are nothing more but lazy kung-fu. As if not a lot of time had been spent in the choreographing. There is just no "WOW" factor there and so it looks rehashed and boring. The space battles once more, personally looked too much like star trek's. Including the good ol' shaking cockpit. Besides, you can see stuff like that in "Stargate" and "Battlestar Galactica" nowadays. Which just goes to show, that for a full-blown movie, there should be some zazz in it, otherwise it just looks like a TV-production.
The movie stars a group of little known actors and actresses and based on their performance, this is not going to make them any bigger. Not that this is an actors movie in the first place, so its hard to criticize them for them for those rather caricatured characters. We see a lot big macho tough guys, who like big guns and speak from the gut, with low raspy voices. None of them however really come off as a tough guy, but rather as guys trying to act tough. As for the women, we have an Asian ninja, for one, who is some kind of an government weapon. Thats right, not a huge death star, or a killer ray gun, but a ninja. She doesn't really have many lines due to her rather disturbed past, mainly shes just sneaking around, seeing dead people and kicking ass.
Now the story itself revolves around this ninja girl, who in the beginning escapes a secret government laboratory, and hides on a spaceship called serenity. Not only that, an assassin sent after her. Never the less, the story turns into something about a sinless world or what not, at some point. And apparently this girl is needed... for something. The dialogue came off as witty in the beginning, but eventually the snappy one-liners wore off their welcome and became annoying.
Conclusion, straight to DVD-material. Not worth the greatness of a big-screen.