Archive | 5:00 pm

She’s Our Only Hope

11 Dec

In the unnecessary remake The Day the Earth Stood Still, a large green orb drops down out of the sky and lands in — where else? — New York City’s Central Park. (Why New York? Well, aside from being a total cliche, why wouldn’t aliens want to visit New York?) Out pops Klaatu, a strange creature who turns out to be an alien messenger in the form of Keanu Reeves. He tells astrobiologist (and of course she’s an astrobiologist) Dr. Helen Benson (Jennifer Connelly) that because the humans have treated the earth so poorly, he is going to destroy them all. How trendy. (In the original 1951 film, Klaatu was there to address nuclear warfare and other Cold War–era concerns.) But this is the Age of Barack Obama, so the good scientist (and really — why are they always scientists?) believes that she can convince Klaatu that the humans can change, and thus, she can prevent Klaatu from accomplishing his mission. Thankfully, you only have to wait an hour and 45 minutes to find out if she succeeds. DTESS feels like it wants to be part horror film, thriller, and action flick, but it never really succeeds as either of those. It’s science fiction, but as mentioned, it’s pointless, ineffective science fiction. Characters — including Kathy Bates’ Secretary of Defense — speak with all the expected gravitas, but none of it seems particularly worth watching. On the plus side, DTESS looks great. But I’m still giving it a C+.

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