Posts Tagged ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’

Do you remember Deep Impact and Armageddon in 1998, Dante’s Peak and Volcano in 1997 or Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves and Robin Hood in 1991? There are countless other examples, last year we had two takes on the Snow White fairytale with Mirror Mirror and Snow White and the Huntsman. Later in the year we will get to see how White House Down compares to Die Hard in the West Wing Olympus Has Fallen. Before that we have the recently released After Earth to pair up with Oblivion from earlier in the year:

The concept

Oblivion: In the future, one man (Tom Cruise) and his wife (Andrea Riseborough) remain on an abandoned earth to maintain the machines set to mine the planets natural resources.

After Earth: In the future, a man and his teenage son (Will Smith and Jaden Smith) crash land on an abandoned and inhospitable earth.

Oblivion and After Earth posters

The Talent

Oblivion: Despite a few missteps in recent years, Tom Cruise is still one of the biggest stars in the world as he has been since the late 80’s. the supporting cast includes Morgan Freeman, Olga Kurylenko and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister in Game of Thrones) , but the standout performance comes from Andrea Riseborough who is nothing short of amazing in a limited role.

After Earth: The film is book-ended and contains flashbacks with other characters the film is largely a two character movie. The two are played by superstar Will Smith and his son Jaden who you may remember from The Karate Kid. The girl in the flashbacks is played by Zoë (daughter of Lenny) Kravitz last seen in X-Men: First Class.Oblivion & After Earth The Talent

Whose behind the camera?

Oblivion: With just his second feature Joseph Kosinski again shows the visual flare he showed with TRON: Legacy, but again shows a lack of depth in his character development.

After Earth: Newsflash, the Emperor is but fucking naked. M.

Night Shyamalan is not a good director. The Sixth Sense (1999) is just about the most overrated movie of the last twenty years. The Village (2004) is okay and Unbreakable (2000) is a decent film. The rest of his output is forgettable at best.Joseph Kosinski and M Night Shyamalan

The Good

Oblivion: The movie is set within a believable Sci-Fi world. The film is shot largely on location this is enhanced by visual effects rather than dominated by them, this helps it look amazing. The acting is generally good and as mentioned above sometimes amazing.

After Earth: The film looks good and the action scenes are practically well handled.

The bad

Oblivion: The plot and the characters all feel a little thin and the twists and turns in the plot are telegraphed to the audience.

After Earth: The dialogue is terrible at best. The plot is thin and full of holes.

The Similarities

The two movies are both set on a largely abandoned earth and feature megastar actors with something to prove.

The differences

Oblivion is largely plot driven and plays out with a combination action adventure and mystery thriller. After Earth is more like a computer game where one character has to achieve a task within a timescale.Oblivion & After Earth

The Verdict

After Earth isn’t a terrible film and doesn’t deserve the critical pounding it has received. That isn’t to say it is a great film, it is deeply flawed and gets away with a lot thanks to its short running time and well choreographed action. Oblivion is surprisingly good, the end is either perfectly executed or a contrived cop-out depending on your point of view.

The best abandoned Earth movie from 2103 is:oblivion-movie-poster


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After three full years of my only ongoing feature, what will be the 36th Movie of the Moth? Here are eleven very different contenders:

Safe: More enjoyable nonsense from Jason Statham. Far from his best movie but it has its moments.

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen: Lightweight but enjoyable romantic comedy. Elevated by a great cast most notably an over the top Kristin Scott Thomas.

Silent House: A remake of a high concept Uruguayan, it makes all the same mistakes as the original most notably a concept and a twist that play against each other.

Café de Flore: A dreamy tale set in two eras and two countries, telling two seemingly unconnected stories. I would have liked to have seen a little less modern day and a little more Vanessa Paradis in the early 70’s.

How I Spent My Summer Vacation: Mel Gibson is back making the kind of movie he used to make. Not a great film but enjoyable non the less, it’s a shame it didn’t make it to American theatres considering some of the crap that does.

All in Good Time: Predictable comedy. It has some funny moments and is well acted but there just isn’t enough going on.

The Raid: After making the documentary Merantau highlighting the Indonesian martial art Silat Harimau, Welsh director Gareth Evans reunites with his star Iko Uwais to make a feature film. It doesn’t reinvent the action movie the way Die Hard did but it certainly reinvigorates it.

2 Days in New York: Sequel to 2 Days in Paris (2007) that succeeds is both funnier and simply better than the original. Julie Delpy is as great as ever but the real revelation is Chris Rock who is both funny and likeable.

Dark Shadows: A flawed and ill judged movie based on a long forgotten TV show that doesn’t know if it is comedy, horror or satire. It does however have the odd moment to remind us of the genius of Tim Burton and Johnny Depp.

Moonrise Kingdom: Wes Anderson has turned his unique quirky bittersweet eye on a coming of age drama. It is as funny as you would expect from Anderson, but it is more engaging and endearing thanks to fantastic performances from both the recognisable established actors and the unknown kids.

Snow White and the Huntsman: There are so many variations on the Snow White story, unfortunately this movie chooses to use them all. To its credit it looks good and all the cast are good. If you are going to see one Snow White movie this year it has to be this one not the Julia Roberts crap.

Movie of the Month is: 

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